YCQM: Best WCAX feature stories of 2013 - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

YCQM: Best WCAX feature stories of 2013

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

January 5, 2014 -- A look back at some of the best WCAX feature stories of 2013.

TRANSCRIPT: 

>> Announcer: FROM VERMONT'S MOST TRUSTED NEWS SOURCE, WCAX BRINGS YOU YOUR NEWSMAKERS, YOUR NEIGHBORS. THIS IS "YOU CAN QUOTE ME."

 

>>> GOOD MORNING. I'M STEVE BOTTARI.

 

>> AND I'M GINA BULLARD. THANKS FOR JOINING US.

 

>> THIS WEEK ON QUOTE, WE'RE TAKING A SPECIAL LOOK BACK AT THE YEAR THAT WAS.

 

>> THROUGHOUT 2013, WE MET CHARACTERS, LARGER THAN LIFE VERMONTERS WITH EXTRAORDINARY TALES TO TELL AND SO WE ASKED OUR REPORTERS TO PICK THEIR FAVORITE STORIES OF THE YEAR.

 

>> SOMETHING HAPPENED BACK IN JULY. WE GOT WORD THAT A VERMONT NIL WAS BECOMING AN INTERNATIONAL -- MAN WAS BECOMING AN INTERNATIONAL STAR PURELY BY ACCIDENT. WE WENT OUT TO MEET HIM AND TO FIND OUT IF HIS STORY IS FACT OR FICTION. IF DOUG OWEN LOOKS FAMILIAR, HE SAYS HE GETS THAT A LOT.

 

>> DURING THE DAYS OFF.

 

>> HE DOES PLAY THE BIG GUY AROUND THE HOLIDAYS, BUT LATELY, HE'S GOT BEING RECOGNIZED FOR WHAT HE DID IN A SANTA SUIT, RATHER WHAT HE DID IN A WELL, BASICALLY HIS BIRTHDAY SUIT.

 

>> THAT'S IT.

 

>> WHEN DOUG COULDN'T FIGURE OUT HOW TO PUT A VIDEO ON FACEBOOK, EBB UPLOAD THE IT TO YOUTUBE INSTEAD AND IT WENT VIRAL.

 

>> I DIDN'T KNOW THAT THAT, ONCE IT GOES ON YOUTUBE, 700,000 OF YOUR CLOSEST FRIENDS ARE SOON WATCHING YOU IN YOUR UNDERWEAR.

 

>> MORE THAN HALF A MILLION HITS IN JUST LESS THAN TWO WEEKS. SO WHAT IS BIT THIS VIDEO THAT HAS -- ABOUT THIS VIDEO THAT HAS PEOPLE BUZZING WORLDWIDE? IT'S ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED RIGHT AFTER THIS NOW INFAMOUS POINT. LIKE BABE RUTH, CALLING HIS SHOTS. [ DOG BARKING [.

 

>> ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

 

>> IT SEEMS TOO RIDICULOUS, TOO FAST, TOO UNBELIEVABLE TO BE TRUE. THAT'S WHAT COMMENTERS ARE SAYING ONLINE AND EVERYONE SEEMS TO HAVE A THEORY. THE FISH WAS ALREADY DEAD, SOME SAY. OTHERS, IT WAS ATTACHED TO A STRING. AND EVEN THAT HE WAS HIDING IT, SHALL WE SAY, ON HIS PERSON FM.

 

>> JUST DO IT ONCE AND IF IT DOESN'T WORK, IT DOESN'T WORK.

 

>> DOUG ADMITS THE DIALOGUE WAS STAGED AND PROBABLY COULD HAVE USED A LITTLE WORK. BUT HE SWEARS --

 

>> THAT REALLY HAPPENED.

 

>> THAT REALLY HAPPENED, THAT WAS A REAL FISH.

 

>> THERE WAS NO STRING?

 

>> THERE WAS NO STRING, NO TRAP, NO NET.

 

>> HE SAYS HE'S NEVER DONE IT BEFORE AND DOESN'T THINK HE COULD EVER DO IT AGAIN. BUT AFTER ALL, IT'S NOT TOTALLY UNHEARD OF. BEARS SEEM TO MAKE IT LOOK PRETTY EASY. AND THEN THERE ARE THE FOLKS ON HILLBILLY HAND FISHING.

 

>> STEADY YOUR POND, STUDY YOUR ESCAPE ROUTE WITH THE FISH.

 

>> APPARENTLY THAT STUDYING PAID OFF.

 

>> SO WHEN YOU WERE ON THE ROCK JUMPING, COULD YOU SEE IT?

 

>> YEAH, HE WAS RIGHT THERE, SO I HAD TO JUMP PAST HIM TO GET IN THAT -- TO BLOCK HIS EXIT.

 

>> LET'S COOK 'EP UP!

 

>> HE CAUGHT DINNER WITH HIS BARE HANDS AND ATE IT.

 

>> IT WAS GOOD, IT WAS GOOD.

 

>> AS FOR NOW, NO FUTURE VIDEO PLANS.

 

>> I THINK MY 15 SECONDS OF FAME IS JUST ABOUT OVER.

 

>> THAT IS, UNTIL HIS WIFE PERHAPS --

 

>> WHAT DO YOU WANT FOR DINNER TONIGHT?

 

>> -- GETS HUNGRY AGAIN.

 

>> MAYBE SOME FISH? OH, HOW ABOUT RAINBOW TROUT?

 

>> RAINBOW?

 

>> YEAH.

 

>> OKAY.

 

>> PEOPLE ASK ME, DO YOU BELIEVE IT, DO YOU NOT. I'M STILL UP IN THE AIR WHETHER IT HAPPENS. HE SWEARS IT DID.

 

>> YOU SHOULD HAVE HAD HIM TRY IT AGAIN. WELL, OUR SANTA LOOK-ALIKE WASN'T THE ONLY VERMONTER TO REACH SOCIAL MEDIA STARDOM THIS YEAR. I GOT THE EYE OF THE TIGER DANCING THROUGH THE FIRE

 

>> THE LIPSYNC VIDEO OF KATIE FERRY'S ROAR FROM THE KIDS AND STAFF OF ARE THE DARTMOUTH COLLEGE CHILDREN'S VIDEO HAS BEEN SEEN BY MILLIONS AND EVEN GOT THEM ON NATIONAL TELEVISION.

 

>> TO, YOU KNOW, JUST SHARE OUR MESSAGE THAT EVEN THOUGH WE MIGHT HAVE THINGS TO JUMP OVER, YOU KNOW, WE ROAR. WE REALLY DO.

 

>> THEY'RE TALKING TO PIERS MORGAN. MEGAN WAS TWEETING WITH THE CNN ANCHOR, SAYING LET'S MAKE A ROAR AROUND THE WORLD. YOU CAN SEE THE FULL VIDEO ON OUR WEBSITE, WCAX.COM.

 

>> SOME OF THE STORIES THIS YEAR COULD ONLY MAKE NEWS HERE IN VERMONT, LIKE A BOVINE BREAKOUT. HERE'S THE ESCAPE OF THE YEAR.

 

>> IT WASN'T THE PHONE CALL YOU WERE EXPECTING TO GET THIS MORNING?

 

>> NOT AT ALL. SOMEBODY CALLED AT 3:00 IN THE MORNING.

 

>> IT'S THE KIND OF NEWS THAT MAKES ANY PARENT OR FARMER JUMP OUT OF BED. A DOZEN YOUNGSTERS CAUGHT SNEAKING OUT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. CALL IT PEER PRESSURE OR MAYBE JUST CROWD MENTALITY. WHATEVER IT WAS, IT'S LANDED THESE HEIFERS IN A HEAP OF TROUBLE.

 

>> THEY'RE ALL IN THERE, ALL 14 ARE IN THIS GROUP NOW.

 

>> PAT FITZGERALD SAYS THE HERD WAS OUT TO PASTURE WHEN HE SUSPECTED SOMETHING SPOOKED THEM AND THEY TRAMPLED THEIR FENCE.

 

>> AT THE FURTHER END OF THE FARM.

 

>> THAT'S WHEN THE OUTDOOR SLEEPOVER TURNED INTO MORE OF AN ALL-NIGHTER AND IF THESE 10-MONTH-OLD CALVES LOOK TIRED TODAY, THERE'S GOOD REASON FOR IT. THE BOVINE BREAKOUT STARTED ABOUT A HALF MILE DOWN THIS PASTURE. THEY MADE THEIR WAY ALL THE WAY UP AND THROUGH THE FARM AND HIT THE ROAD. THAT'S A GETAWAY THAT ENDED HERE AT EXIT 16. THE POLICE WERE HOT ON THEIR HOOVES AND CORRALLED THEM TO SAFETY.

 

>> IT WAS DANGEROUS WITH TRAFFIC, BUT THE POLICE DID A GOOD JOB OF HOLDING THE TRAFFIC BACK AND HELPED US IN CORRALLING THEM AND GETTING THEM INTO THE TRAILER.

 

>> THREE OF THE COWS STAYED IN THE PASTURE, BUT THE 11 OTHERS MANAGED TO STICK TOGETHER DURING THE ENTIRE THREE-MILE TREK, WHICH HE SAYS IS SURPRISING FOR THEIR YOUNG AGE.

 

>> COMPLETELY SHOCKED THAT THEY ALL MADE IT HOME OKAY?

 

>> YES, WITH THE AMOUNT OF DISTANCE THEY COVERED AND CATCHING THEM ON THE INTERSTATE, WE'RE VERY FORTUNATE.

 

>> THEY ALL MADE IT HOME BEFORE SUNRISE, BUT THESE LADIES WILL NOT GO UNPUNISHED. THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES FOR THIS KIND OF BEHAVIOR.

 

>> THEY'RE BEING SENT TO THEIR ROOM NOW?

 

>> RIGHT.

 

>> HOW LONG DO YOU EXPECT THAT TO LAST?

 

>> PROBABLY JUST FOR A WEEK AND I'LL PUT THEM BACK IN THE PASTURE.

 

>> FITZGERALD SAYS HE'S HOPING THIS OUTING DOES NOT SET THE TONE FOR ANY MORE LATE-NIGHT SHENANIGANS THIS SUMMER.

 

>> WHY ME? SOMETHING LIKE THAT, HOPEFULLY JUST A ONCE IN A LIFETIME EXPERIENCE.

 

>> WHETHER IT'S A LESSON LEARNED IS ANOTHER STORY. MOLLY SMITH, CHANNEL 3 NEWS.

 

>>> A MUSHROOM MYSTERY HAS PEOPLE TALKING THIS FALL, SO WE SENT OUT JULIE KELLY LOOKING FOR ANSWERS IN THE CASE OF THE INFAMOUS PUFF BALL.

 

>> I THINK IT WILL BE RIGHT HERE.

 

>> AND IT'S GONE.

 

>> IT'S GONE.

 

>> THE EARTH IS STILL TURNED UP IN THE SPOT IT SAT IN BETSY BROWN'S YARD ON A ROAD MOST FOLKS NEVER DRIVE DOWN UNLESS THEY LIVE OUT HERE OR ARE VISITING.

 

>> I CAME HOME A COUPLE DAYS AGO AND FOUND A NOTE ON MY DOOR.

 

>> HELLO, I SPIED A BEAUTIFUL PUFF BALL GROWING IN YOUR MOWED FIELD. I HAVE A THING FOR PUFF BALLS.

 

>> EVEN AFTER READING THIS, BETSY DIDN'T QUITE KNOW WHAT SHE HAD UNTIL SHE POSTED IT TO FACEBOOK AND GOT MORE COMMENTS THAN SHE'D EVER HAD BEFORE.

 

>> IT'S WORTH MONEY TO SOMEONE WITH RESTAURANT. I LIVED IN VERMONT PRETTY MUCH MY WHOLE LIFE AND I HAD NO IDEA YOU COULD EAT THESE THINGS.

 

>> IN FACT, WHEN BETSY'S PUFF BALL MUSHROOM WAS STOLEN LAST YEAR, THE THIEF DERAILED HER HUSBAND'S PLAN AND IT HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH EATING IT.

 

>> APPARENTLY WHEN THESE MUSHROOMS GO BY, YOU CAN MAKE THEM EXPLODE, HENCE PUFF BALL. THEY KIND OF GO...

 

>> THIS YEAR, HERE DAUGHTER WAS HOPING TO DO THIS. BUT THERE'S ANOTHER TWIST TO THIS MUSHROOM MYSTERY. RIGHT AFTER BETSY TOOK THIS PHOTO, SOMEONE TRIED TO STEAL THIS YEAR'S PUFF BALL TOO, BUT A FRIEND CAUGHT 'EM WHITE-HANDED.

 

>> SAID TO THE GUY, HEY, DO YOU HAVE PERMISSION TO TAKE THIS BECAUSE MY NEIGHBORS WANT IT AND I GUESS HE FELT BAD AND BROUGHT IT DOWN TO THE PORCH, SO I HAVE IT IN MY FRIDGE. IT'S RIGHT HERE.

 

>> IT LOOKS LIKE A TURKEY.

 

>> OH, YEAH.

 

>> IT'S HUGE.

 

>> IT'S THE SIZE OF A TURKEY.

 

>> SHE WARNED ME, BUT UNTIL YOU SEE IT --

 

>> WHOA, THE BIG REVEAL.

 

>> YEAH, THAT WAS A SOUGHT-AFTER PUFF BALL MUSHROOM IN MONKTON.

 

>> THAT'S A COUPLE OF POUNDS OF PRIZED PUFF BALL MUSHROOM IN MY HANDS. EXPERTS SAY THAT THE MUSHROOM CAN BE THE SIZE OF YOUR FIST, THE SIZE OF A BASKETBALL, OR EVEN THE SIZE OF A SMALL KID, WHICH BETSY'S IS ALMOST AS BIG AS HIM.

 

>> EVEN A MUSHROOM EXPERT IS BLOWN AWAY WHEN I SHOW HIM A PHOTO OF BETSY'S MUSHROOM.

 

>> OH, MY GOD --

 

>> THAT'S HER BABY.

 

>> MILLER IS A LAW STUDENT BY DAY AND A MUSHROOM FORAGER BY NIGHT.

 

>> I WAS ALWAYS FASCINATED BY MUSHROOMS EVER SINCE I WAS A CHILD. I BEGGED MY MOM TO BUY ME THE AUDUBON FIELD GUIDE TO NUSH ROOMS WHEN I WAS 10 YEARS OLD.

 

>> TODAY, WHAT STARTED AS A BLOG HAS GROWN INTO A BUSINESS WITH WORKSHOPS AND EVEN THE FORAGE CAST.

 

>> BECAUSE THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF SPECIES OF MUSHROOM OUT THERE, ALLOWS THEM TO CUT THROUGH THE MADNESS AND FOCUS ON THE DISTINCTIVE AND DELICIOUS OR MEDICINAL SPECIES.

 

>> THE PUFF BALL IS ON THE FORAGE CAST RIGHT NOW.

 

>> MADE INTO MANY DIFFERENT DISHES, PUFF BALL PARMESAN, STIR FRIES, GRILLED GIANT PUFF BALL.

 

>> WITH KNIFE IN HAND, WE'RE READY.

 

>> LET'S SEE. WHOA! IT'S WHITE. LOOKS LIKE WE CAN EAT IT.

 

>> THIS IS -- SO THIS IS WHAT SHE CUT OPEN THIS MORNING.

 

>> MM-HMM. NICE.

 

>> HOW DOES THAT LOOK?

 

>> THAT'S PERFECT FOR EATING. THAT'S NICE WHITE, FIRM FLESH. SMELLS NICE AND FRESH. IT'S A PERFECT EATING STAGE.

 

>> SO HOW DO IYOU THINK YOU'RE GOING TO COOK IT?

 

>> I MIGHT THROW IT IN WITH ONION AND GARLIC, WE'LL SEE, AND BUTTER.

 

>> AN UNEXPECTED TASTE OF VERMONT FOR A GIRL WHO GREW UP HERE.

 

>> WE MAY HAVE THE BIGGEST MUSHROOM, I DON'T KNOW, PUFF BALL MUSHROOM IN VERMONT RIGHT NOW, I DON'T KNOW.

 

>> THAT WAS JULIE KELLY REPORTING. I'VE NEVER HEARD OF THESE THINGS.

 

>> NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE THAT.

 

>> BUT I WOULD -- THAT LOOKS SO COOL. ARTISTS ARE DRAWN TO VERMONT, BUT OFTENTIMES VERMONT DRAWS THE ARTIST OUT OF YOU.

 

>> TAKE A WOMAN SHARON MEYER TALKED WITH AS CASE IN POINT. SHE SAYS SHE SAW BEAUTY IN HER BACKYARD, PICK UP A CAMERA AND HASN'T STOPPED SHOOTING SINCE.

 

>> SO THIS IS WHERE YOU TAKE A LOT OF YOUR PICTURES?

 

>> THIS IS IT, THIS IS THE SPOT. THIS IS WHERE EVERYTHING HAPPENS. YOU GET A GREAT VIEW OF THE WHOLE BAY. YOU SEE THE WEATHER COMING OUT.

 

>> YOU MAY NOT KNOW YOU'RE AN ARTIST UNTIL YOU FIND YOURSELF IN AN INSPIRING SITUATION. THAT'S WHAT BOSTON DISCOVERED WHEN SHE MOVED TO THE SHORES OF LAKE CHAMPLAIN ABOUT TWO YEARS AGO.

 

>> WERE YOU INTERESTED IN WEATHER AND BIRDS BEFORE YOU MOVED HERE?

 

>> I LOVED WEATHER. BIRDS? SORT OF, BUT YOU GOT EAGLES FLYING RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOUR FACE AND YOU CAN'T HELP BUT, OH MY GOD. AND YOU SEE THE OSPREY DIVE DOWN AND GET THEIR FISH AND THEN YOU HAVE THE TERNS, THE COOLEST AND FUNNIEST BIRDS THAT EVER LIVED, SQUAWKING AND DIVING AND YELLING AT THEIR KIDS. IT'S KIND OF LIKE "AS THE WORLD TURNS."

 

>> AND ONCE SHE WAS HOOKED, SHE WAS HOOKED.

 

>> SO HOW HAS LIVING ON THE LAKE CHANGED YOU?

 

>> I THINK IT'S GIVEN ME A CHANCE TO TAKE FOSS AND REALLY ENJOY -- PAUSE AND REALLY ENJOY NATURE EVERY SINGLE SECOND BECAUSE EVERY DAY IT'S A DIFFERENT DAY. SOME DAYS YOU JUST APPRECIATE THE LIGHT. EVERY DAY, THE LIGHT IS A LITTLE BIT DIFFERENT, SO I THINK IT'S REALLY HELPED ME STOP AND TAKE MORE PAUSE IN LIFE AND I JUST LOVE IT. I ONLY STARTED THIS MAYBE A YEAR AND A HALF AGO.

 

>> HOW ARE YOU GETTING SUCH GOOD PICTURES THEN?

 

>> WHEN I FIRST MOVED HERE, ALL I HAD WAS MY iPHONE, SO I SEE GREAT BLUE HERRON, I TRIED TO GET THAT PICTURE AND CAN'T GET IT WITH AN iPHONE. SO A LITTLE BIT NICER THAN A POINT AND SHOOT, BUT THEN YOU SAY THE BIRDS ARE MOVING TOO FAST FOR ME, SO THEN I UPGRADED TO THE NEXT CAMERA AND THAT JUST REALLY WASN'T GOOD ENOUGH, SO THEN I UPGRADED AGAIN AND GOT A BETTER LENS AND SO I THINK I AM WHERE I AM, ALTHOUGH I'M ALWAYS WISHING FOR THE NEXT BEST THING.

 

>> BUT SOMETIMES I HAVE MERE SECONDS TO GET THAT SHOT BECAUSE I'LL SEE THE EAGLE COMING ACROSS THE BAY AND I'LL COME SKIDDING ACROSS MY HOUSE IN MY SOCKS AND JUMP OUT HERE AND I'LL KEEP MY CAMERA ON A REALLY FAST SETTING SO I CAN KIND OF JUST GET IT AND THEN WORK FROM THERE BECAUSE I DON'T HAVE A LOT OF TIME TO FIGURE OUT, LIKE, REALLY ALL THE -- NATURE DOESN'T WAIT FOR ANYTHING.

 

>> NO, I DOESN'T WAIT.

 

>> IT'S A SKILL SHE'S DEVELOPED IN AN ART FORM THAT'S BECOME A PART OF HER. AS LONG AS SOMETHING AMAZING KEEPS HAPPENING OUTSIDE HER WINDOW, SHE'LL KEEP GRABBING HER CAMERA.

 

>> SO THIS HAS BEEN TRULY AN AMAZING ADVENTURE HERE. I'M TRULY HOOKED. I LOVE VERMONT, I LOVE LIVING ON THE BAY. IT'S JUST AWESOME. AWESOME EXPERIENCE.

 

>> AND BEAUTIFUL IMAGES THERE, SHARON MEYER WAS REPORTING. STILL AHEAD ON "YOU CAN QUOTE ME," THE MUD MATH THAT PROMISES PERFECT SKID.

 

>> PLUS, SHE'S 87 YEARS OLD, STIM CLIMBING LADDERS EVERY DAY. WE'RE BACK RIGHT AFTER THIS. Channel Three Photographer Jo

 

>>> CHANNEL 3 PHOTOGRAPHER JOE CARROLL MEETS A LOT OF CHARACTERS ACROSS THE STATE EACH WEEK WITH HIS SERIES SUPER SENIORS.

 

>> AND THIS SUMMER, HE MET ONE IN THE NORTHEAST KINGDOM WHO WAS TOUGH TO KEEP UP WITH.

 

>> FARMERS AROUND THE ONLY ONES COMPLAINING ABOUT THE WET SPRING OF 2013.

 

>> WE'VE HAD SO MUCH RAIN, I HAVEN'T BEEN ABLE TO GET ON THE OUTSIDE.

 

>> HOUSE PAINTERS HAVE BEEN HIT HARD.

 

>> I'LL GET MY STUFF HERE.

 

>> SO A SHOT OF BLUE SKY AND YELLOW SUN IS A PERFECT MATCH FOR CLEVELAND MEINER. TODAY HE'S WIPING OFF THE MILDEW, PREPPING TO PAINT THIS HOUSE IN ST. JOHNSBURY.

 

>> YOU'RE NOT AFRAID OF HEIGHTS?

 

>> NO, NOT AFRAID AT ALL.

 

>> HIS KOREAN MOTHER NAMED HIM CLEVELAND. HE DOESN'T KNOW WHY. EVERYONE CALLS HIM CLEVE. THE 87-YEAR-OLD GETS AROUND LIKE A TEENAGER, ALL OVER THE NORTHEAST KINGDOM, RESIDENTS THINK HE'S AMAZING. ONE TOLD HIM RECENTLY AFTER CHURCH.

 

>> YOU RUN UP THAT HILL LIKE NOTHING. I THINK, THAT IS NOTHING. IT DOESN'T BOTHER ME.

 

>> TO SAY IT NICELY, CLEVE'S LADDERS ARE VINTAGE. HE'S BEEN USING THE SAME PAIR SINCE HE TOOK OVER THE BUSINESS FROM A FRIEND IN THE EARLY '50s.

 

>> THAT LADDER IS FROM 1951?

 

>> OH, BEFORE THAT.

 

>> THE SON OF A PAINTER, CLEVE WAS BORN JUST UP THE ROAD IN LINDEN CORNERS. HE LEARNED THE VALUE OF A DOLLAR FROM HIS DAD. YOU KNOW HOW TO SAVE, DON'T YOU?

 

>> YOU KNOW IT, YES, BECAUSE I LEARNED FROM HIM.

 

>> HIS OFFICE ON WHEELS IS HIS 20-YEAR-OLD BUICK STATION WAGON, FILLED WITH ALL THE TOOLS OF THE TRADE.

 

>> WHEN I GO TO A JOB, I TRY AND FIGURE ON EVERYTHING I'VE GOT TO HAVE.

 

>> CLEVE'S CLIENTS SAY HE HAS THE BEST WORK ETHIC OF ANYONE THEY'VE SEEN. MOST HAVE KNOWN HIM FOR DECADES, INCLUDING PRISCILLA FLANDERS.

 

>> HE KNOWS MORE ABOUT PAINT THAN ANYBODY AROUND HERE.

 

>> SOME PEOPLE MIGHT SAY AN 87-YEAR-OLD SHOULDN'T BE CLIMBING 50 FEET UP.

 

>> WELL, I HEAR THAT ALL THE TIME.

 

>> THE WORLD WAR II VET DOESN'T THINK HE SHOULD HANG UP THE LADDER. HIS ONLY MAJOR FALL WAS WHEN HE WAS 50, BREAKING MULTIPLE BONES IN HIS BODY. HE NEVER THOUGHT OF QUITTING. THERE WAS ALSO A VOICE IN THE BACK OF HIS HEAD. IT WAS FROM HIS DAD, "SAVE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN." HE INVESTEDS OF IS MONEY AND HOW HE SAYS HE'S COMFORTABLE.

 

>> DO YOU THINK PEOPLE NOWADAYS SPEND TOO MUCH MONEY?

 

>> THEY DO, THEY DO.

 

>> FAR FROM A BRUSH-OFF, HE TRULY LIKES PEOPLE, SO HOW WOULD HE DESCRIBE HIMSELF?

 

>> A GUY THAT'S FRIENDLY AND CONSERVATIVE. JUST LIKE TO WORK.

 

>> THAT'S WHAT HE'LL BE DOING ALL SUMMER, NEVER CLIMBING SOME CORPORATE LADDER, JUST HIS OWN. JOE CARROLL, CHANNEL 3 NEWS, ST. JOHNSBURY CENTER.

 

>> MANY OF THIS YEAR'S BEST STORIES TUG AT THE HEART STRINGS, ESPECIALLY ONES FEATURING AMAZING ANIMALS. THEY TEND TO DO THAT, LIKE THE STORY OF A SLED DOG OVERCOMING THE ODDS WITH BROTHERLY LOVE.

 

>> WE'RE INTRODUCED GONZO WHO HASN'T LET BEING BLIND STOP HIM FROM THE SPORT HE LOVES.

 

>> YOU SEE HIM IN ACTION, YOU CAN TELL HE'S MEANT TO BE A SLED DOG.

 

>> HERE WE GO!

 

>> GONZO IS SO CUTE, HE THROWS HIS HEAD IN THE AIR AND IS JUST WAGGING HIS TAIL. HE'S ALONG FOR A RIDE, HE'S SUCH A HAM.

 

>> BUT SUDDEN ILLNESS THREATENED TO TAKE HIM OFF THE TEAM. THREE YEARS AGO, HE WENT BLIND IN THE SPAN OF JUST A COUPLE WEEKS. TREATMENTS DIDN'T WORK AND NO SURGERY COULD RESTORE HIS SIGHT. HIS FUTURE AS A SLED DOG WAS IN LIMBO.

 

>> IT'S HARD TO FIGURE OUT. HE SAID WHAT DO YOU THINK, HE SAID JUST TAKE HIM OUT AND SEE WHAT HE DOES. HE LOOKED EXCITED TO GO.

 

>> HERE WE GO.

 

>> SO WE DID. WE HARNESSED HIM UP. SLOWLY REINTRODUCED HIM, AND OVER A SPAN OF ABOUT A YEAR, HE REINTEGRATED INTO THE TEAM BECAUSE HE WANTED TO. HE WAS VERY SAD WHEN HE GOT LEFT BEHIND.

 

>> GOOD BOY, GONZO!

 

>> A SOLUTION DEVELOPED WHEN HIS BROTHER PONCHO BECAME HIS SEEING EYE DOG. IT WAS A PROCESS THAT TOOK TIME.

 

>> WHEN GONZO BEGAN TO LEAN INTO PONCHO AT FIRST, THAT'S WHEN HE GOT FRUSTRATED, BUT HE BEGAN TO ALLOW THAT WHEN HE REALIZED THERE WAS SOMETHING DIFFERENT FROM HIS BROTHER.

 

>> AND HIS FUTURE AS A SLED DOG DIDN'T SEEM SO FAR FETCHED ANYMORE.

 

>> PONCHO MIGHT LEAN INTO HIM, NUDGE HIM, BARK AT HIM. THEY DEVELOPED A SYSTEM THAT WE CAN'T TEACH.

 

>> BUT THEY WORK QUITE WELL AS A TEAM. THEY ARE TRYING TO LIKE GONZO COMFORTABLE WITH OTHER DOGS AND THAT WAY HE ISN'T TOO DEPENDENT ON HIS BROTHER.

 

>> BUT IF SOMETHING WERE TO HAPPEN TO HIS BROTHER, WE WANT HIM TO FEEL LIKE HE CAN STAND ON HIS OWN TWO FEET AND BE CONFIDENT.

 

>> HIS NECK LINE KEEPS HIM RUNNING STRAIGHT, BUT HIS BROTHER HAS HIS BACK WHEN GONZO'S BLINDNESS GETS HIM IN TROUBLE.

 

>> HE STEP OFF THE DEEP TRAIL AND THE STORY GOES, PONCHO LITERALLY LEANED OVER AND ON THE BACK HARNESS, GRASPED HIM WITH HIS FRONT TEETH, GOT HIM UP AND IN STRIDE AND THEY GETS GOING.

 

>> AND THEIR WAGGING TAILS INSPIRATION HAS GIVEN HIS HANDLERS A NEW PERSPECTIVE ON DISABILITY.

 

>> WE PERCEIVED HIM AS HAVING LIMITATIONS SO WE MIGHT HAVE BEEN MORE HESITANT, BUT TO THE DOG, THE SKY'S THE LIMIT. HE SAYS I'LL ADAPT AND KEEP GOING.

 

>> I FIGURE IF I WAS BLIND, I'D RATHER BE OUT RUNNING AND DOING SOMETHING FOR FUN THAN JUST SITTING AT HOME.

 

>> THEY TOLD US AS LONG AS THIS DYNAMIC DUO WANTS TO PULL SLEDS, THEY'RE NOT GOING TO STOP THEM. CHANNEL 3 NEWS, BRETTON WOODS, NEW HAMPSHIRE.

 

>> OUR REPORT THIS SUMMER OF A VICIOUS ATTACK ON A GROUP OF KIDS BY A RABID RACCOON EASILY COULD HAVE TAKEN A MUCH SCARIER TERM.

 

>> BUT AS ADAM REPORTS, IT DIDN'T THANKS TO A QUICK-THINKING BRAVE KID.

 

>> I WAS TERRIFIED AND SHOCKED AT THE SAME TIME.

 

>> A SCARY TURN DURING A PLAY DAY IN THE WOODS SUNDAY. THIS 11-YEAR-OLD AND HER FRIEND WERE HANGING OUT WITH HIS 5-YEAR-OLD BROTHER BEHIND PIPER'S HOUSE IN KIRBY.

 

>> MY BROTHER WAS STANDING OVER THERE AND HE STARTED TO SCREAM AND RUN UP THE HILL.

 

>> AROUND NOON, THE KIDS SAY A HISSING RACCOON APPEARED OUT OF NOWHERE AND WENT STRAIGHT FOR HER. I PUT MY HAND UP TO MY FACE LIKE THN AN IT GRABBED ON TO MY THUMB AND I STARTED TO CHOKE IT WITH MY LEFT HAND AND THEN IT STARTED TO FALL OFF. THEN IT GRABBED AHOLD OF ME RIGHT HERE. AND THEN I STARTED TO CHOKE IT WITH BOTH HANDS, THEN IT JUMPED UP AND IT GOT ME RIGHT ON MY HAND AND NOW I HAVE FOUR STITCHES THERE.

 

>> SHE SUFFERED SIX BITES, INCLUDING THIS ONE ON HER THIGH. WHILE FELIX SCREAMED FOR HELP, 10-YEAR-OLD PIPER GOT INTO THE FIGHT.

 

>> PIPER SAID WHAT IS IT, AND THEN I SAID IT WAS A RACCOON. AND SHE STARTED -- SHE GOT A STICK AND SHE POKED IT AND STARTED HITTING IT A LITTLE, WHICH HELPED OUT A LOT.

 

>> I HAD ALREADY HAD THE STICK AND I JUST -- I DON'T KNOW REALLY WHAT I WAS THINKING. I JUST KIND OF GOT TO TRY TO GET IT OFF OF IRY.

 

>> WHEN PIPER WAS BEATING IT WAS A STICK, I WAS TRYING TO FIND A BIG ENOUGH STICK, BUT THERE WAS A REALLY BIG STICK AND SINCE IT WAS REALLY BIG, I WAS AFRAID TO USE IT AND I SCREAMED, GET AWAY FROM MY SISTER, RACCOON.

 

>> IT EVENTUALLY LET GO AND RAN OFF INTO THE WOODS. IRY WAS RUSHED TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM WHERE SHE IMMEDIATELY BEGAN TREATMENT FOR POSSIBLE RABIES EXPOSURE. WHILE THE RACCOON THAT ATTACKED HER WAS NEVER FOUND, IT IS ASSUMED THE ANIMAL WAS INFECTED. THE HEALTH DEPARTMENT HAS CONFIRMED 20 CASES THIS YEAR.

 

>> NO PARENT WANTS TO GET A CALL LIKE THAT.

 

>> CAMPBELL SAYS HE'S PROUD HIS DAUGHTER WAS SO TOUGH AND GRATEFUL THAT HER BRAVE 10-YEAR-OLD FRIEND STOPPED THE ATTACK FROM BEING WORSE.

 

>> PIPE FER IS A LITTLE HERO. SHE'S A COOL KID. SHE'S A TOUGH KID, ONE THAT WILL JUST BARREL DOWN ANY RUN AT THE SKI MOUNTAIN.

 

>> AND WHAT MAKES HER ACT OF HEROISM EVEN MORE PROFOUND, FIPE PER IS LEGALLY BLIND WITH A DEGENERATIVE DISORDER, SO WHERE DOES HER INNER STRENGTH COME FROM?

 

>> I DON'T REALLY KNOW. I DIDN'T WANT, LIKE -- I NEED TO GET REALLY HURT.

 

>> WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT HER?

 

>> I THINK THAT IF SHE DIDN'T HELP ME OUT, THAT IT WOULD HAVE BITTEN ME MORE.

 

>> A REASON FOR A BIG HUG, KNOWING THAT WHEN TROUBLE LURKS BEHIND THE BUSHES, A GOOD BUDDY HAS YOUR BACK.

 

>> SHE REALLY HELPED OUT A LOT. SHE'S A GOOD FRIEND.

 

>> ADAM SULLIVAN REPORTING THERE. FROM EXPENSIVE POTIONS AND LOTIONS TO PEELS AND FACE-LIFTS, SOME PEOPLE WILL DO ANYTHING FOR THE PERFECT SKIN.

 

>> AND WE MEAN ANYTHING. AS I FOUND OUT, THAT INCLUDES A MASK MADE FROM MANURE.

 

>> IT SMELLS LIKE THIS.

 

>> IT'S AN ALL-DAY MEETING AT VERMONT NATURAL AD PRODUCTS IN MIDDLEBURY TO TALK ABOUT THE NEWEST ADDITION TO THE MOO-DO LINE.

 

>> SO THIS IS CERTIFIED ORGANIC?

 

>> KNOWN FOR COMPOST AND TOP SOIL, THE COMPANY IS DIGGING DEEP AND SPREADING OUT.

 

>> IT IS MAGIC.

 

>> FROM GARDEN BEAUTY TO TRUE BEAUTY, IT'S NEWEST PRODUCT IS A FACIAL MASK MADE FROM SOMETHING VERMONT HAS A LOT OF. COW MANURE.

 

>> WE REALLY THINK VERMONT IS GOING TO BE ON THE MAP WITH MOO-DO VOODOO.

 

>> THE COMPANY ADMITS PUTTING A COW PIE ON YOUR FACE MIGHT SEEM ODD, AND YES, A LITTLE GROSS.

 

>> LOOK AT WHAT IT HAS DONE FOR ME.

 

>> BUT MOO-DO VOODOO MARKETING MANAGER COLLEEN WRIGHT SAYS THERE'S NO NEED TO FEAR. A DIGESTER PROSES THE DROPPINGS TAKING AWAY GAS AND ODOR. RED CLOVER HONEY IS THEN ADDED.

 

>> THESE ARE ALL SAFE FOR YOUR FACE?

 

>> YOU COULD JUST GET A BIG PILE OF THIS AND ROLL AROUND BUCK NAKED IN IT AND YOU'LL BE JUST FINE.

 

>> THE IDEA FOR USING MEADOW MUFFINS IN A NEW WAY CAME FROM FARM WORKERS. THEY NOTICED A DIFFERENCE IN THEIR SKIN AFTER WORKING WITH THE DEHYDRATED WASTE.

 

>> THE GUYS WERE UP HERE CLEANING THE DIGESTER OUT AND THEY WOULD COME BACK TO THE OFFICE AND THEIR HANDS WOULD BE SO SMOOTH AND SILKY AND IT'S LIKE WHAT ARE YOU DOING? AND THEY'RE LIKE, WE TAKE OUR GLOVES OFF AND DIG RIGHT DOWN IN THE PRODUCT IN THE DIGESTER AND PULL IT UP, AND AT THE END OF THE DAY, OUR SKIN IS LIKE A BABY'S.

 

>> A FOUR-OUNCE JAR COMES AT A PREYUM. $125.

 

>> TWHUT WHEN IT COMES TO LOOKING YOUNG, PEOPLE ARE WILLING TO PAY. WRIGHT SAYS THE PHONE ARE RINGING OFF THE HOOK.

 

>> HOW ABOUT THE FIRST PART OF NEXT WEEK, DR. OZ?

 

>> IT'S BECOME A HOT TREND IN HOLLYWOOD.

 

>> ANOTHER BIG, BIG, BIG CUSTOMER IS DOWN IN NEW ORLEANS. THE VOODOO MUSEUM IS CARRYING IT ON THE SHELVES. IT'S SELLING LIKE HOT CAKES.

 

>> STILL DON'T BELIEVE IN THE POWER OF MANURE MOISTURIZER? WRIGHT SHOWS HOW IT WORKS. LET THE MASK DRY, THEN RINSE, AND WATCH THE YEARS ALMOST MAGICALLY WASH AWAY. BUT NOT SO FAST.

 

>> MOO-DO, THE PRODUCT, IS GREAT FOR YOUR GARDEN, BUT MOO-DO VOODOO --

 

>> APRIL FOOLS!

 

>> THAT'S RIGHT.

 

>> APRIL FOOLS!

 

>> A MADE IN VERMONT PRANK PRODUCT. HAPPY APRIL FOOLS DAY.

 

>> AND LOOK AT WHAT MOO-DO VOODOO HAS DONE FOR ME.

 

>> GINA BULLARD, CHANNEL 3 NEWS, MIDDLEBURY.

 

>> A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE FOOLED BY THAT.

 

>> YEAH, SO MANY PEOPLE. THEY COULDN'T BELIEVE PEOPLE WERE PUTTING MANURE ON THEIR FACE.

 

>> I DIDN'T.

 

>> AND PEOPLE WOULD DO IT TOO FOR BEAUTY. THAT'S IT FOR US THIS MORNING ON "YOU CAN QUOTE ME." YOU CAN ALSO CHECK OUT THE YEAR IN PICTURES ON OUR WEBSITE.

 

>> THANKS SO MUCH FOR JOINING US, EVERYONE. HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND. CAPTIONING PROVIDED BY.CAPTION ASSOCIATES, LLCwww.captionassociates.com ~]`@@

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