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NASA Holding New Conference; NASA Releases New Images From Mars; Possible Movie Massacre Copycat; Page Cited for Misconduct in Military; FBI Undercover Informant Came Across Page in His Work; Sikh Temple Leader Gave Life to Protect Others; NASA Released Mars Photos Amid Excitement Over Rover Landing
Aired August 7, 2012 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Zoraida Sambolin. I'm filling in for Suzanne Malveaux. This hour in the CNN NEWSROOM, we are focusing on life on Mars. New live pictures from the Mars rover, Curiosity, are expected this hour. Let's get right to it.
We're waiting for a NASA news conference in California. Scientists will explain how they pulled off one of the most complicated interstellar rover landings in history. But for now, all eyes on this. The very first video of the Curiosity landing, released today. The grainy video was shot onboard moments before touching down. John Zarrella and Chad Myers join me now for more. So, John, let's start with you. You have been following the story very closely and are live at NASA's jet propulsion laboratory in California. Tell us about this new video and what exactly are we seeing?
JOHN ZARRELLA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, in fact, Zoraida, what we're seeing in this video are images taking from the descent camera, and that's made by Malin Space Industries down in San Diego. And it's -- the video shows the Curiosity rover as it is descending down through the atmosphere towards the touchdown on the surface of Mars. And it was 297 images all put together into one continuous short video.
And then there was the haz cam image. And they finally did get a higher resolution picture which shows Mt. Sharp in the distance. And that Mt. Sharp is, of course, critical -- what they are hoping to do is get over to Mt. Sharp, eventually, and they can look back in history at the history of Mars. And I believe, the news conference has begun out here at the jet propulsion laboratory and we do expect to get some new pictures coming in from this press conference.
(PRESS CONFERENCE JOINED IN PROGRESS)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- mechanism is in fine shape, but it was not quite pointed accurately enough at the earth for us to get the telecom signal that we wanted. Now, we've looked at that pointing as a parameter that we can set. There's a little bias in the pointing and the telecom folks and the antenna mechanism folks have taken a look at that and have a correction for that bias. And we're going to send that up with our next command load and establish direct to earth communications via this -- via this antenna on tomorrow. OK. Next thing that happened yesterday was the anything of some science observations. We turned on the rad instrument and then, in fact, the P.I. of rad, Don Hessler, is right here in the audience. And it required several hours of excellent rad data that the team is now taking a close look at. We also did the first sensor diagnostics, sensor calibrations for the rims instrument and required a few minutes of rims data and that worked successfully.
We then tested the molly focus mechanism and acquired our first molly image on the surface. And Ken Edgitt will talk about that just shortly here. We also took what are called dark images from our navigation cameras and the mast cam. So, the remote sensing mast, which is this mast, is folded down like this and the cameras are facing down, and it allows us to take an image with no light in it to see if there's any bright pixels in there that we need to subtract away to get the best possible quality images later when we are deployed. And those executed successfully as well.
We then wanted to turn rims on and acquire additional rims data, and that test did not work correctly. The rims instrument has a -- has a lot of parameters that control its -- the frequency of its observations, and I think they're taking a close look at whether those parameters are set the way they want to. So, the rim's team is taking a look at that right now. But the -- but the sensor diagnostic that occurred earlier in the day was successful, so we think this is just a function of how their observation table parameters are set up.
OK. Now, the plan for tomorrow is -- as I mentioned, is to establish direct to earth communications by slightly changing the pointing of the high gain (ph) antenna. And we're also going to deploy this remote sensing mast. And actually, we have the video of how that should look when we did it in assembly and tests before launch. So, if we could see that video? OK. So here it is. So, that is the remote sensing mast. It's quite a huge thing compared to previous missions. What you see on the top there is you see a big white box and that's actually part of the chem cam instrument, right, that will eventually, you know, fire laser at rocks and allow us to remotely determine the composition. It contains both a camera and a laser.
And then, below that is our primary -- our primary imaging systems. So, you see four little silver cylinders there, those are redundant navigation cameras. And then, in between those, you see kind of a square and a round camera and those are the space science system's mast cameras. So, that's our -- that -- those are the highest quality color images we have. So, of course, we want to get them up on top of the mast and get them up high. You know, this is -- this mast -- you could not look this in the eye unless you were probably an NBA player, and so we want to get these up high and take a good look at the horizon and, you know, start taking our stereo photographs and our color photographs. So, this is one of the key activities for tomorrow is to deploy. We received enough telemetry today to say that that mechanism is go for deploy, and so we see no reason that that's not going to -- going to function successfully tomorrow. We're then going to take it to look back at our own deck and take a navigation camera parameter. It should be a 360, but we'll kind of start at the deck and look around. And then, we'll also take an image from the mast cam of the calibration target -- the mast cam calibration target. So, I think that that's -- I think that's everything for tomorrow. And I mentioned, we took the first molly image yesterday. So, Ken Edgitt.
KEN EDGITT, SCIENTIST, MALIN SPACE SCIENCE SYSTEMS: And the -- you might not be able to look the mast cameras, and now (ph) cameras, and chem cam in the eye, but the molly can because the molly is on the end of a two-meter-long robotic arm. And we can position molly any way that arm can go. We can go straight up, we can go all the way down to the ground. We can get within an inch of a rock or inch of the soil and take a close-up image that's about twice the resolution of the M.I., the micro stop image (ph) around spirit and opportunity. Right now, the arm -- I guess, I should just show, there's an animation. Right now, the arm is stowed and the turret is stowed. And when that's happening, the molly is just pointed off sort of the left front shoulder of the rover. And that just happens to be, right now, pointed directly north from where we've landed.
So, you see in the animation, the fielded (ph) view of the molly there, it's about 38 degrees, in a diagonal sense. There's the molly. And there's the image we got which we put out overnight, and we'll talk a little bit more about that in a minute or so. The molly is a focusable color camera. This is the first color image of the landscape where we've landed, and, like I said, we'll talk about it some more in a second. I waited a long time for this to come back.
This -- this was, basically, a focus test. The focus mechanism, itself, has not moved since July of last year when we were down in Florida, and we've gone through all those environments of launch, cruise, EDL, and the temperature cycles and does the focus still focus? And it does. Now, we also have a dust cover because most of the time we don't want dust on the -- we don't want dust on the lens at all, but most the time we'll just keep it closed. For this first image, we said, let's keep it closed. We can focus whether the cover is opened or closed. So ,we thought we better keep it closed because we don't know the state of -- you know, how dusty the molly is after landing.
Let's look at the next -- there's a picture of -- this is the hazard camera, the front hazard cameras. You've seen this before. The one on the -- I guess it's my left. I don't know if it's your right. But there's one that's really dusty, right? That was before the hazard cameras, the dust covers popped off. And then, the other image is not so dusty, that's after the dust cover was removed. On the haz cams, those are -- often they stay off. On molly, the cover will open and close when we want to use the molly with the cover open.
So, let's go to the next image and, again, this is the image that the molly took, and you can see that the cover has dust on it, and so the scene is kind of murky. It's actually somewhat pathological because we're the -- we're facing north, and the sun, it's still winter there and so the sun is kind of high and sort of northwest of here, and -- at this time of day. And so, you're just kind of getting some of that scattering off the front of the lens, so it makes it look even more murky than it actually is. It's not a dust storm. It is, as you can see, a clear day on Mars and the lens is just a little dusty. One of my co-investigators said, it looks like the dust cover did what it's supposed to do. And I was like, yes, it did.
But the other point is, the camera did what it's supposed to do, it found focus. When you look at this -- the image online, you will see that you can see rocks in the foreground and you'll also notice it's kind of blocky. That's the compression, you know, to -- because of the fuzziness on that -- you know, of the dust, it sort of overcompresses it, right? If it was clean, you wouldn't see that. So it works, it's awesome, can't wait to open it and see what else we can see.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, we should have called this the dust cover test.
EDGITT: The dust cover test. Well, it was really -- it's a focus mechanism test. We'll test the dust cover later on after we're certain that we can open it. So, first, we'll take a look at it with the navigation cameras on the mast and stuff. I guess there's one more picture. This was -- sort of gives you a sense of what the image looks like in context. This is digital terrain derived from topography from images from a lot of orbiters, from mars express and mars reconnaissance orbiter, all put together. And then, we placed the molly image in there to give you a sense of what it looks like. And then, we made that molly image a little bit transparent so you could actually see the stuff behind it. But it all lines up real nice. So, I think I covered all my points. On to you.
SARAH MILKOVICH, SCIENTIST, NASA: OK. Well -- so, yesterday, I was here to show you a fabulous image that high-rise took of Curiosity coming in through the atmosphere. And today, I'm here with another fabulous image of Curiosity on the surface. So, this is a special -- this was a special sequence we did. Normally, MRO only takes -- can only -- it rotates with -- or it rolls within 30 degrees either direction as it's traveling across the Martian surface. For this, we had to roll about 41 degrees in order to get this image. So, it's not as good quality as images that we are going to get later, but we wanted to get an image of the surface as soon as possible after landing.
So, if we could go to the first animation. So, we're zooming into the landing site here. And the image you're going to see, it's -- actually the view is as if it's tilted 45 degrees. So there's the high -- there's the full high-rise image because the roll of 41 degrees, we're now seeing part of the planetary curvature so the image is a little skewed. And this is what we call -- you're calling the -- it's like a crime scene photo here. So, this is about 39 centimeters per pixel. And at this location, the MRO orbit is about 300 kilometers above the surface. And we can see just all of the components of the whole EDL system.
So, if we could go to the -- if we could keep going. So, we're zooming in. Here is Curiosity. That sort of spot at the center there is Curiosity. And the dark streaks on either side, that's where the bright dust has been removed or disturbed as in the course of landing. And one thing that's really great about this, we predicted the position -- by looking at these dust streaks, we can figure out what orientation we think MSL, or Curiosity, is. And if you keep going on the emission (ph), we can see -- we have knowledge from -- oh, we don't have it on this one.
OK. Well, we have knowledge from MSL, itself, and it matches up just perfectly. So, it's a really nice feeling when you have -- you're getting the same information from orbit as you're getting from the ground and that really makes you feel very good. This is the parachute and the back shell.
And you can see as you look -- you know, as you look closely at this, you can start -- you can see some of the features on the parachute that you were able to see in the EDL image, you know, the nice -- the bands. This -- all of these images, again, because of this angle that we took this image at, it's looking through a larger column -- a longer column of atmosphere. So, there's a lot more dust that we have to look through in order to see these. And also, from the -- you know, looking at the dust covers on the various cameras on Curiosity, we know that a lot of dust was kicked up over the course of these events. So, hopefully in our future images, we'll be able to get even better, more detail in these.
So, if you go to the next one. And, again, the dark -- the dark areas here are where the bright dust has been removed. So, I think next is going to the heat shield. And so, you can see the heat shield and, again, disturbance around the heat shield. And if you could keep going -- and finally, the sky crane. So this pattern is consistent with an oblique impact. So coming in as your -- the dark area is sort of downrange of the impact. This is what we see if we had, you know, meteorite impacts forming, craters on the surface of planetary bodies and this is the same sort of pattern that you get.
And if you could keep going. And we don't know -- we're still looking at all the details of what's going on. You know, we've -- this image was taken at about 10:30 last night Pacific Time, and, you know, then it takes several hours to get it down and to the high-rise team and processed. So we're still -- we're still looking at the details here.
I have some -- I have some distances for you here. The distance between the Curiosity rover and the heat shield is about 1,200 meters. The distance from the rover to the back shell parachute area is about 615 meters. And then to the sky crane is 650 meters. So just to try and give you a sense of perspective here.
So we are next taking an image five days from now is the next time that we're able to take an image of this area. And this one we are going to be able to target with the updated coordinates for where we know we actually landed. This image was taken with -- we were targeting the very center of the landing ellipse. So this is with -- where we -- where we thought we'd get to, you know, from before we got there, basically. So we're hoping that in the next few weeks we'll be able to get a couple more images of this area. We're going to try for some color in this area as well. So that should be very exciting. So, stay tuned for that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All right. Thank you, Sarah (ph). Thank you to all our panelists.
(END LIVE COVERAGE OF PRESS CONFERENCE)
SAMBOLIN: You've been listening to a press conference that NASA is having on Opportunity landing on Mars. We're going to go back to John Zarrella now and talk a little bit about this.
So, John, this is what I gathered from this press conference. That everything is working the way that it's supposed to be working. That they're very excited about these images that they've received. And I thought Ken Edgett, who's a research senior scientist, or the senior research scientist there, actually got a little emotional. Am I right?
ZARRELLA: Yes, you know, Edgett's been working with Malin Space Systems down in San Diego for quite a while. And, you know, one of the crowning glories for them for this flight is the descent imager. We talked about that before the press conference started. That's the one that got the images of Curiosity going through the atmosphere and as it approached. You know very much Apollo-like pictures as it approached the surface.
And the story behind that, Zoraida, is that, you know, a few years ago, NASA, to save money, decided they were going to scrap it. They weren't going to finish the project. There wouldn't be a descent imager. But Edgett and Mike Malin (ph), from Malin Space Images, said, you know what, we're going to finish it on our own and we're going to make sure it's on there. So they did with their own nickel. So that's why we ended up getting those tremendous images.
And the ones today that we are seeing that they keep showing were taken -- the ones from above -- spectacular black and whites taken from the Mars reconnaissance orbiter flying overhead. The same orbiter that gave us the picture yesterday that showed Curiosity going through the atmosphere, the parachute deployed, and Curiosity on the end of it.
So now they've been able to image with MRO (ph) not just Curiosity on the ground, but the sky crane, where that fell, where the back shell fell, where the heat shield fell, where the parachute fell. All these things all in relation to where Curiosity is on the ground. And as you heard Sarah talking about there, they expect within the next few days they'll even get more images and perhaps some colored pictures. So they're really teasing us right now and wetting the appetite for some of the spectacular images that are likely to come.
Zoraida. SAMBOLIN: Well, I've got to tell you, they're doing a wonderful job because we're as excited as they were at this stage of the game, right? It seems very exciting.
SAMBOLIN: I want to bring Chad in. I may have called it Opportunity earlier, but, of course, we're talking about Curiosity here.
And, Chad, if you can tell us, Mars is approximately 155 million miles from the U.S., from here on Earth. How long does it actually take from the time that they take those pictures for us to actually get them here?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: As the signal leaves Mars, it takes 14 light minutes to get here. About 11 million miles for one light minute. Do the division and you have about 14 minutes. So that means that when we send a signal back to Curiosity to do something, it's going to take 14 minutes for it to do it. And then, if it takes a picture, another 14 minutes to send that picture back.
So if you're talking about that taking a picture, that's one thing. But when you talk about it moving, or driving along the landscape not trying to fall into a small hole or hitting a rock or hitting a bump, that's why it's such a slow process. You move it a couple feet, you wait 20 minutes. You move it another couple feet and you wait another 20, 25 minutes for the images to come back.
Now, as Mars rotates around, as Earth makes its rotation around the sun, those distances will change and those minutes will change because Mars is on a completely different planetary orbit as the earth.
SAMBOLIN: And for all of us lay people out here, how do we control the rover? Is it controlled partly from earth? Or how does that actually function?
MYERS: Wouldn't that be great if they had -- you know, how sometimes you have the webcams at home and you can control them on the beach and you could -- wouldn't it be great if you had a little controller at home and you could do it?
SAMBOLIN: It would be fabulous.
MYERS: It would be great. Hey, it's your day to control the Curiosity. No, that will be all done from JPL. All those instruments, all those things are done at a very slow process right now. We -- I know we're very impatient, we want to get pictures.
SAMBOLIN: I know. Bring them now.
MYERS: They don't want to blow fuses. They don't want -- they want everything to be nice and slow and methodical. Do one thing at a time. Raise the mast. Raise the cameras. The cameras that we're seeing here are mounted on the front of the vehicle and all the cameras that we were seeing are just, the avoidance cameras so that when it looks here at the bottom, it doesn't run into something that it didn't know was there. So, there we go, Zoraida, that's all we've got for you today.
SAMBOLIN: Gotcha. I always want to think that there's some way to control it from here as well. Chad Myers, John Zarrella, guys, thank you so much for bringing it back into English for us. We really appreciate that.
MYERS: You're welcome.
SAMBOLIN: And here's what we're working on for this hour.
Police say this man was planning a deadly attack on a movie theater playing the new Batman movie. We have the latest on this unbelievable story.
And the man who gunned down six people at a Sikh temple is connected to white supremacist bands. I'll talk to a former FBI profiler about the growing problem with hate groups in America.
And we are still live from the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, California, bringing you all the new pictures from the Mars rover Curiosity.
SAMBOLIN: A copy cat movie massacre may have been in the works. Ohio police say they have arrested a man who had a loaded gun, ammunition, and knives at a theater where the Batman movie was showing. Deb Feyerick is on that story and she joins us here from New York.
Deb, this is incredibly disturbing. What are police telling you?
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, here's what's so interesting. They may have stopped something that was about to happen for the very fact that they were simply paying attention. But here's what we know.
Thirty-seven-year-old Scott Smith walked into a movie theater near Cleveland, a little town called West Lake. He arrived about 30 minutes before the movie was supposed to start. He was the first person in the theater.
Now, instead of going to the front of the theater, he took a seat in the very back in the center right in the middle. A wall behind him. A police lieutenant who I spoke to said that position was actually quite tactical. Raised the red flag for the manager and also for an off duty police officer who was doing security at the movie theater.
The lieutenant tells me that they approached the man. He had a bag with him. That also raised suspicions. When they asked to look inside his bag, what they found was a .9 millimeter semiautomatic handgun, two loaded magazines and three knives. They also found a fourth knife that Smith was carrying. Now, he told police, they asked him, you know, why did he have all this stuff? And he said that basically he wanted to protect himself and he wanted to protect other people in the movie theater. The police didn't buy that. They took him into custody without incidence. They got a search warrant for both his car and his home. Inside his home they found additional weapons.
And that's a picture of the bag that he was carrying. So, again, it didn't seem like a normal bag, which is why they searched it. An initial search of the bag didn't even turn up the semiautomatic handgun according to the person I spoke with because it was sort of inside a pocket with a zipper. So initially they didn't even discover it.
They searched his home. They found some rifles, shotguns and they also found some survival gear, like gas masks.
SAMBOLIN: Oh, my goodness.
FEYERICK: So they are going to charge him with carrying a concealed weapon. You can carry a concealed weapon in Ohio, you simply can't do it, though, inside of a movie theater.
Also, he was on prescription medication. And if you're on prescription medication, you're also not supposed to be in possession of weapons. Smith did tell him that he had been with the Army for just a couple of months. Not clear as to why he left. But that's all right now under investigation. But very scary.
And seventy-six people ended up going to that movie. So this manager and this undercover -- this off duty officer who was doing security, they really could have prevented a huge tragedy. Maybe he wasn't going to do anything. But given the position of his seating and the weapons he had, it raises it to a whole new level.
SAMBOLIN: That is absolutely incredible. And lucky that there are people that are doing some quick thinking, right?
FEYERICK: Absolutely. One hundred percent. Everybody's on alert. You know, we live in New York City. We take it for granted. But in other parts of the country now, a lot of other people are sort of on higher alert.
SAMBOLIN: All right. Thank you very much.
And when we come back, we're going to have much more on the Sikh temple shooting.
SAMBOLIN: People in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, will gather tonight to remember the victims of Sunday's Sikh temple shooting. They held vigils the past two nights and will come together again this evening. Six worshippers were killed, including the president of the temple. Satwant Singh Kaleka died a hero. Police say he tried to stop the gunman and his actions actually saved the lives of others. The youngest victim, 39-year-old Pakash (ph) Singh. He was a priest who recently immigrated to the United States with his wife and two young children. Also among those killed, 41-year-old Sita Singh, 49- year-old Ranjit Singh, and Paramjit Kapur, 41 years old, the only woman who was killed. 84-year-old Suveg Singh is the oldest victim.
The gunman who opened fire on the Sikh temple served in the military six years. A man who describes himself as an Army buddy says Wade Michael Page talked about waging racial holy war. Page's military service was marked by trouble as well.
Pentagon correspondent, Chris Lawrence, is driving us live now.
Chris, Page was cited for patterns of misconduct. What do you know about the kind of trouble he got into?
CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Zoraida, it involved alcohol. Basically, drinking and getting drunk while he was supposed to be on duty. That eventually led to him getting busted down from a sergeant down to a specialist, and eventually the Army issuing him a general discharge.
That's significant in that it's a general discharge, is not as valuable. It's not as prized as an honorable discharge, but it's nowhere near as bad as a dishonorable discharge. And it comes with one big stipulation. If you get a dishonorable discharge, under federal law, you legally cannot own a firearm. Whereas, you don't lose that right if you get a general discharge, which is what Page got.
SAMBOLIN: And what can you tell us about the training that Page received while he was in the military?
LAWRENCE: Yes, he was in a psychological operations battalion. You've got to be fairly smart to get into this area of service. In fact, one of the men he served with said that was one of the things he liked about Page, that he was friendly but that he was also a smart guy as well. They're responsible for analyzing, disseminating a lot of information in foreign lands. At his rank, probably, it was something like dropping leaflets and being involved in that sort of operation.
SAMBOLIN: All right. Chris Lawrence, live at the Pentagon for us. Thank you very much.
Authorities are investigating the Sikh temple gunman's ties to white supremacist groups. Those groups are on the rise in the United States. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, there are more than 1,000 known hate groups operating in the United States. Those include neo-Nazis, Klansmen, Skinheads, White Nationalists and Black Separatists. The agency says hate groups have increased by 69 percent since 2000. That growth has been fueled by the struggling economy, immigration, and the election of Barack Obama as a first African- American president. That is what they say.
David Gletty worked as an undercover informant on the hate groups for the FBI and joins us from Orlando, Florida.
Thank you for being with us.
You say you actually came in contact with gunman, Wade Michael Page, during your undercover work with the FBI. Where did you see him and what do you remember about him?
DAVID GLETTY, FORMER UNDERCOVER HATE GROUPS INFORMANT: Twice up in Michigan. Once in Lansing, Michigan, and then over in Ann Arbor, Michigan, at a neo-Nazi protest rally celebration and then at a Hammerfest rock 'n' roll festival for the Confederate Hammer Skins.
I remember briefly meeting him. He was with other leaders of different groups. At that point, the celebrations, all different factions of different groups, Skinheads, Nazis and Klan members. Anti-government militias come there. He was with one of the bands. I can't remember the name of the band. But he was up there, helping set up the instruments. He seemed to be a very likable person because of the people that hung out with him. So that was my extent of seeing him. And so --
SAMBOLIN: Let's talk about those bands. You say one of the ways hate groups appeal to young people is actually through the music. The Sikh temple gunman was involved in far right punk bands. According to "The New York Times," one of those bands was definite hate. So let's listen to this excerpt from one of their songs.
(BEGIN AUDIO FEED)
(END AUDIO FEED)
SAMBOLIN: Boy, that's really difficult to listen to. How do those songs affect young people who may be easily swayed by these messages of hate?
GLETTY: Well, that brings back memories. I remember going to events and parties and protests and hearing that same old rhetoric, and it got hard to smile and act like I enjoyed it. But they use it like the Pied Piper. They use the music as a tool, an important tool of the recruitment process. It brings in young kids, young youth on the outskirts of society. They're looking for love, looking for attention. They're looking for people to fit in with, because they're not getting that at home or they may be bullied in school. So they're looking for new friends and they find it with these groups. They get in with them. The group acts like they love them. They befriend them and then they get them to do their wrongdoings. Because a lot of the leaders of these groups have already been to jail, already been to prison. They don't want to go back so they know they need to get younger recruits in. And using the music is one of the hot items to get these young people in to start a life of hate and racism.
SAMBOLIN: All right. David Gletty, informant of hate groups for the FBI. We really appreciate your time today. Thank you.
And we have more on the victims of the Sikh temple shooting and heroic actions of the temple president. Anderson Cooper joins us live from Wisconsin with part of his interview with the temple leader's wife and his son.
SAMBOLIN: He is one of the heroes of the tragic shooting rampage in Wisconsin. The leader of the Sikh temple that was attacked, fought with the gunman, giving other people time to take cover. It cost him his life.
In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Satwant Singh Kaleka's wife and son said he live the American dream.
AMARDEEP KALEKA, TEMPLE PRESIDENT'S SON: My dad put that flag outside when we first bought a house, our first house. We come home from high school and we were laughing. We were like, dad, that's going to be an eye sore. You have an elementary school-sized flag in your front yard. He says to us, he goes, look town the street. Do you see any other American flags? We didn't. He goes, our house, because this is our house, because we came here, it's been a land of opportunity for us.
UNIDENTIFIED WIFE OF TEMPLE PRESIDENT: Really should know we're close to the American friends, you know.
KALEKA: And a form of protection.
ANDERSON COOPER, HOST, ANDERSON COOPER 360: A form of protection.
KALEKA: He said it. He goes, look, I don't want anybody doing anything to our house.
SAMBOLIN: That's pretty powerful.
Anderson Cooper joins us live from Oak Creek, Wisconsin.
Anderson, family members say that they were not surprised by his act of bravery. What else did you learn from talking with that family?
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They did say that. They said this was the kind of thing that he was known to do. He cared so much about this temple and about the community and would dedicate so much of his time in order to try to help the community. He actually, they said, grabbed a butter knife. That was the only thing he could get, and tried to use that against the attacker. We're still trying to learn more details about exactly what happened inside that temple.
Police actually do have surveillance footage from security cameras that they are going over. That obviously has not yet been released to the public.
And we now know that the funerals are going to be on Friday for all six of the victims. And the Kaleka family is trying to raise money for some of those families because some of the families don't have much in the way of resources, even to pay for those funerals. They've set up a web site called wearesikhs.com that people can go to donate.
SAMBOLIN: I've been surprised -- maybe not surprised, kind of happy they're using this as an educational opportunity for all of us to learn about their community and peace. What else do they have planned for this evening? I thought, perhaps, they were having some more vigils.
COOPER: Yes, there's going to be a number of vigils in a lot of different locations. They're really just trying to kind of get the word out. You know, it's the fifth-largest religion in the world. They're really trying to get people to just kind of understand a little bit more about who they are, what their beliefs are, and the important role that they play in this society and many societies around the world.
SAMBOLIN: Actually, I think you've done a great job sharing all of that with us. We appreciate it.
Anderson Cooper live from Oak Creek, Wisconsin. Thank you very much.
We're going to take a quick break and we'll be right back.
SAMBOLIN: NASA just released new pictures from Mars. Here is a look for you.
Joining me now is theoretical physicist from Arizona State University, Lawrence Krauss, author of a bestseller "A Universe from Nothing."
We thank you for joining us via Skype from Australia. Very cool.
You watched the news conference along with us. We saw NASA officials get teary eyed. How exciting is this?
LAWRENCE KRAUSS, THEORETICAL PHYSICIST, ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY & AUTHOR: It's amazing. It's exciting. It's so wonderful for not just the NASA people, but for everybody. It's like being on Mars. And I've always said that, in fact. You don't need a human on Mars, you just need a rover. And you look at those images, it looks like Los Angeles at sunset.
SAMBOLIN: So would life on Mars look anything like life on earth?
KRAUSS: Well, we don't know, of course. That's one of the reasons we send these things out, to, first of all, discover if there is life on Mars. I mean, it would be amazing if we do discover that, because it will mean -- well, it won't -- it could mean several different things. It's most likely our cousins. Because, in fact, we discovered that material goes between Mars and the earth all the time. We discover Mars rocks in Antarctica. They get knocked out by meteors that hit the Martian surface. Microbes could survive the voyage between the two. In fact, each planet is polluting the other planet. It would be very surprising to discover, if we discovered life on Mars, not to discover its cousins. What makes it even more interesting is life may have evolved first on Mars and actually made it to the earth. We don't know. All of that is incredibly exciting because what we really want to know is, are we alone in the universe?
SAMBOLIN: And so as you're watching these first images that we're all seeing at the exact same time, is there anything that you see with your trained eye that you could share with us?
KRAUSS: Well, right now the first images, as was pointed out, the color image is through a dust cover, so it's pretty dusty. And I did -- the black and white images are clear, looking at the mountain. And the key -- the key thing they're going to want to be able to do as they climb that rover up the mountain is be able to look at literally different layers of Martian history. Just like when you look at an installment (ph) by a river, you see areas of rock that's been exposed from different times in Martian history.
And early in the history of Mars, we think it was hotter and wetter. That's the time when, if there was life on Mars, it would have evolved. So it will be incredibly exciting to try to see the different layers. It's a little too early right now to get any science. Right now, it's just fascinating. I feel like I'm on Mars. I watched the landing with all the 97 images as it was coming down. I saw the parachute. It's amazing that, with the orbiter, we can actually get other cameras to show us where all those things came down. I'm as excited as I've been, I think, since the moon landing.
SAMBOLIN: Wow. What would it mean for science if we find signs of life?
KRAUSS: Well, I think it would be one of the greatest discoveries science has made in the last, well, maybe even the last century. The fact that life on earth is not unique in the universe is a beginning. Because we just discovered, with the Kepler satellite, over 2,000 planets around distant stars and we're on the edge of being able to look for earthlike planets. And if life could exist or evolve independently on other planets on our solar system, it means that probably the galaxy is teeming with life. There are 100 billion stars and, if there's microbial life, then maybe somewhere else is intelligent life. And that, of course, would be one of the greatest discoveries in human history. SAMBOLIN: Yes, it would be, indeed, Lawrence Krauss. We want your enthusiasm about this.
Thanks for being with us today via Skype. We appreciate it.
KRAUSS: It's been a pleasure. Take care.
SAMBOLIN: It's been a pleasure for us.
So there's some bad news for the development of a new Alzheimer's drug. We'll have that after the break.
SAMBOLIN: It was one of the most anticipated experimental drugs for Alzheimer's disease but Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson say that are halting the production of the new drug, bapineuzumab. Trials showed it was failing to help patients with moderate to mild Alzheimer's. It would have been the first drug to fight the progression of the debilitating brain disease.
Now we have money advice from CNN's "Help Desk."
ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Hi there. Here on the "Help Desk" today, we're talking about student loans.
With me, Doug Flynn and Liz Miller.
Doug, this question is for you.
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UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is it better to pay the minimum balance and spread it out over ten years or more beneficial to pay off as much as possible as soon as possible?
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KOSIK: Something a lot of us can relate to. What do you think?
DOUG FLYNN, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER, FLYNN ZITO CAPITAL MANAGEMENT: The big important issue is whether or not you have a good cash reserve in place. Three to six months, I would go with six months. Obviously, you want to pay down debt as quickly as you can. If it's a lowest interest debt and you don't have enough cash saved up, the last thing you want to have happen is you lose your job and now you don't have anything to fall back on. It depends on what situation you're in. If you have a good cash reserve, absolutely you want to pay it down as quickly as you can.
KOSIK: What's considered a good cash reserve?
LIZ MILLER, CHARTERED FINANCIAL ANALYST & CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER & PRESIDENT, SUMMIT PLACE FINANCIAL ADVISORS: At different points in life that can change. After you meet your monthly expense, you really want to start putting a little something away each month. If you can achieve three months, that's a great starting point.
KOSIK: Trying to pay everything down all at once, you shouldn't try to do that? It's a big burden.
FLYNN: It is. The interest rate is low and you have other goals. I want to save for a house or car or something, you don't want to put everything down on your student loans at a low rate when you can save and invest for other goals. You have to know where you are. It's a good idea to pay down debt. You want to do that but not at the expense of not being able to do anything else.
KOSIK: OK, good advice.
Now if you want an issue that you want our experts to tackle, upload a 30-second video with your "Help Desk" question to irerport.com.
SAMBOLIN: It is day 11 of Olympic competition and all the chills and spills were on the gymnastics floor.
So here is our spoiler alert. If you don't want to know, walk away now. I told one of our producers. She was pretty angry with me.
Aly Raisman is going home with two gold medals, becoming the first U.S. woman to take gold on the floor exercise. Teammate, Gabby Douglas is going home with two golds but an unfit (ph) finish ended her Olympic debut on a sour note. Faltering on the balance beam before falling on her landing. In track and field, American Lolo Jones is looking for redemption after her stumble in Beijing in the women's 100-meter hurdle. She will compete in the semi finals. We're going to wish her a lot of luck.
CNN NEWSROOM continues right now with my good friend, Alina Cho.
ALINA CHO, CNN ANCHOR: Hey, Zoraida. Thank you.