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Fire Ravages Jersey Shore; Thousands Flee To Higher Ground; Where No Probe Has Gone Before; Interview with Kristine and Thomas DeWolf; New York City Students Rescued; We "Can" Stop; Celeb Praises Paparazzi; Eyes Under Fire

Aired September 13, 2013 - 07:30   ET


KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to NEW DAY, everyone. Let's get straight to John Berman for all the top news you need to know right now.

JOHN BERMAN, ANCHOR, CNN'S "EARLY START": Thanks, Kate. Firefighters remain at the scene of a huge blaze along the boardwalk in Seaside Heights, New Jersey. This is a live look right now at the devastation. There it is right there. They're still working to put out that fire, obviously some smoldering embers still there, at least 50 businesses have been damaged or destroyed. The same area suffered massive damage last year during Hurricane Sandy. The boardwalk had only recently been rebuilt. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie says it is simply an unthinkable situation.

A weather emergency playing out right now in Colorado, Rocky Mountain Canyon filled with water after a brutal rainstorm. Rivers and creeks flooding or threatening homes, roads and bridges swept away, cutting off some towns and forcing people to higher ground. At least three people have died, many more have been rescued and there is more rain in the forecast today.

A controversy brewing at the University of Alabama has nothing to do with football. The student newspaper reporting allegations that several white sororities turned away a rush recruit because she's black. The girl reportedly graduated near the top of her high school class and comes from a family with school ties. Some sorority members told the paper alumni threatened to cut off funding if the chapter accepted a black member.

Voyager One has officially gone where no space probe has gone before. NASA officials calling it a significant achievements in science history, not over playing it at all, confirming that Voyager One, it has left our solar system after 36 years of space travel. Scientists say the probe entered interstellar space more than a year ago. Data shows that Voyager One is now in the region of cold, dark space after exiting the Heliopause, a bubble of hot energetic particles surrounding our planets and sun. Of course, you all know what the Heliopause is.

And a manatee hits rock bottom. It got stranded near an island on Florida's Indian River, couldn't out of the river bid, but it picked itself up, dusted itself off. Wildlife officials were on the way to help, the manatee said, I got this. It made its way into deeper water. Swim away, manatee, be free! That's all I have for you. The manatee is free now. That's the good news. Hi, Chris.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right, John, we'll take all the happy endings we can get.

We want to tell you now about a story that we've been following. It's been nearly two months since Paul DeWolf was killed. He was a 25- year-old University of Michigan medical student. We know he died from a single gunshot wound. Now police still have no leads on who murdered him or why. Paul's parents are obviously desperate for answers and they're asking for help. In a minute we're going to talk with them here on NEW DAY, but first we want to remind you what happened to this young man.


CUOMO (voice-over): Paul DeWolf's death is still a mystery, unsettling an Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan community. His life once full of promise cut short. He was an athlete, an aspiring surgeon, valedictorian of his high school. His death has left his friends in disbelief.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's hard for me to believe that Paul would have any enemies. I don't know a single person that didn't like him.

CUOMO: The University stepped up police presence on campus, but investigators still have no suspects and few leads in the search for DeWolf's killer. Inside his apartment where his body was found, no weapon, nothing stolen, no signs of struggle. Students returning for the fall semester are on edge.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is definitely unnerving, just making sure the doors are locked at all times.

CUOMO: DeWolf was an active duty second lieutenant in the Air Force, studying to become a surgeon he had planned to complete his residency while serving his country.

SARALA SARAH, PAUL DEWOLF'S FRIEND: He was excited and ambitious and really looking forward to all the great things life had to offer for him.

CUOMO: At his funeral, DeWolf's sister, Rebecca played the theme song from "The Office" to honor her brother, a silly song they enjoyed playing together. Family and friends are still mourning the loss of this promising young man hoping that someone who knows something will come forward.


CUOMO: Joining us exclusively this morning are the parents of Paul DeWolf, Kristine and Thomas. Thank you so much for joining us.


CUOMO: So it has been since July that you've been waiting for an answer to what happened to your son. How often are you in touch with investigators? What are they telling you about the case?

THOMAS DEWOLF: We're actually in contact with the investigators off and on throughout the week, sometimes once or twice a day even. They just have been very good in communicating everything that they have to give us, even if they don't have an update in the news to us.

CUOMO: And obviously I'm sure on your own you're doing everything you can to be curious about this situation. Kristine, did your son ever tell you anything? Was there any concern he had about anything going on in his life or somebody who didn't like him or crime or anything that makes any sense to you?

KRISTINE DEWOLF, MOTHER OF MURDERED MICHIGAN STUDENT: No. Nothing at all. He loved life. He loved his friends. He just had such a passion about doing everything. There wasn't any time that he said that he was concerned about anybody.

CUOMO: The home invasion that took place on the same block the day before your son was killed, any reason to believe it could be connected?

THOMAS DEWOLF: We don't have any reason to believe that. We've not been led to believe anything along the line of that. We are aware of that, but there's been no connection that we've been made aware of there.

CUOMO: I'm looking behind you at the pictures of your son, the American flag there. He had accomplished so much and as parents you had to be so proud. How have you coped during this time? Losing someone that meant so much to you.

KRISTINE DEWOLF: A lot of prayer, but we have such a good support system through our greater family, through our neighborhood, through our church, but definitely a lot of prayer.

CUOMO: And Thomas, you know, a big reason we're doing this story is that we want to keep it in people's recollections, because very often in cases like this, it's what somebody remembers or somebody decides to come forward about that makes the difference. What do you want people to know, Thomas?

THOMAS DEWOLF: The Ann Arbor police have posted a $10,000 reward along with the University of Michigan. We're looking for anybody that has any knowledge at all about this incident of someone coming in and shooting our son. We would like them to contact the Ann Arbor police and give them any information that they might have, if they heard somebody briefly talking about it, any interest at all, we really need to have you contact the police and let them know what you know about this incident.

CUOMO: What have you been hearing from his friends and from the community about the impact that your son made even in his short life?

KRISTINE DEWOLF: We've heard from teachers. We've heard from patients. We've really heard from his fellow medical students and it's been a lot of fun to hear how Paul helped them, how Paul came alongside them, how much fun that they had together. That was such a healing process, just to sit the day after we found out he was shot, to go over there and sit with the medical students and listen to their memories and what they had done with Paul.

CUOMO: I know that for a family the last way you want to remember your son is how he lost his life. What is the way that you're going to remember your son? What is one memory, one recollection that you'd like to share about who your son was?

THOMAS DEWOLF: I believe that the memory for my daughter was that she had the opportunity the Saturday before, she spent the entire day with him. They were paddle boarding on the river in Ann Arbor. They went to movies. They went downtown. They enjoyed some good meals together. They had a great day together.

For me, my last memory of Paul was we had taken him shopping in the Detroit area. When we came back and dropped him off, there was a new student coming to the house and typical of Paul, he ran across the yard to help that student get into the house because they were locked out.

He was there to welcome them in. As he was closing the door and going through the door, he turned around and in his customary way he blew us a kiss and waved to us and said see you later, Dad.

CUOMO: Do you need for the answer to come here or are you going to move on in your own way regardless? How much does this mean?

THOMAS DEWOLF: I think that for myself we can't stop our life right now. Paul would not want us to stop. We need to continue on. The memories will always be there. He was a very integral part of our family and each one of our lives. He would want us to move on. We're going to do that the best that we can.

CUOMO: Well, I'm sorry to meet both of you this way, but we will do what we can to keep this story in people's memories, refresh it and do what we can to help with the investigation. The Ann Arbor police have an anonymous tip line, the number is 734-794-6939 or you can call crime stoppers at 1-800-speak-up. That's 773-2587. Thomas, Kristine, thank you very much for joining us. We'll do the best we can to help.

THOMAS DEWOLF: Thank you, Chris.

CUOMO: Kate, over to you.

BOLDUAN: Chris, thank you so much.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, people jumping into action when an SUV jumps a curve and hits a group of middle schoolers. Good Samaritans lifting the two-ton SUV off of them. The desperate and dramatic effort to save their lives and get them out, that will be ahead.

But then there's also this, a dad going to great lengths in very short-shorts to teach his teenage daughter a good lesson. Why this dad might actually be the best dad ever.


BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY. A sidewalk horror turned into a miraculous rescue in New York City. An out-of-control SUV jumped the curve -- just look the video -- jumped a curve, plowed into a group of kids on their way to school. Two of them were pinned under a car. That's where the heroes come on in. CNN's Pamela Brown is picking up the story for us now, amazing.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Certainly a heroic rescue here. It all started out as a typical early morning walk to school and turned into a frightening ordeal for these school kids in Queens who couldn't even see the threat coming. It was all captured on surveillance video.


BROWN (voice-over): Watch as these three middle schoolers walk down the sidewalk to school. Suddenly out of nowhere, this SUV jumps the curve, the moment of impact too horrifying to show, sees a victim flying into the air as her friends watch in horror.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: If I took one step I would have gotten in the crash also.

BROWN: According to affiliate New York One, bystanders quickly rushed to lift the SUV off two girls pinned underneath.

LYNX GARCIA, WITNESS WHO HELPED VICTIMS: Everyone was screaming. People came out their windows. They were screaming. It was really disturbing. It's children.

BROWN: David Tobis told affiliate WCBS he was walking his dog when he saw the out-of-control driver plow into the girls. He quickly jumped into action.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Me and about nine other guys lifted it enough to where we could get the girls out.

BROWN: Tobis and several others who came to the rescue are credited as heroes. Freeing the girls within minutes, alive but suffering from serious injuries.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I saw two of the victims on the floor. I can't even describe what I saw on their legs.

BROWN: Total New York One says five children were injured in the accident including this 11-year-old boy.

DAJRAM ERCIC, INJURED WHEN SUV LOST CONTROL: I was trying to run away, but the car hit me. My whole life flashed before my eyes.

BROWN: Law enforcement officials believe the driver accidentally hit the gas pedal when he men to the hit the brakes as he attempted to park. That's according to affiliate WCBS. The driver whose name was not released passed a breathalyzer test on the scene and is not expected to face criminal charges. (END VIDEOTAPE)

BROWN: However, that driver may still be ticketed for driving violations. By the way, our affiliates say that the kids are still in the hospital. They are in stable condition, but have nonlife- threatening injuries like broken bones, which is really incredible when you consider what happened to them. That SUV literally plowed right over those two victims.

BOLDUAN: We're being careful. We're not showing that moment of impact. There's no need for it. You clearly know what's about to happen at that very moment.

BROWN: Unbelievable.

CUOMO: Two kind of near miracles there, the kids being OK, right? And even if there were ten guys, that's a lot of weight to lift.


CUOMO: In a way that is very hard to get it. It goes to the power of the human spirit.

BROWN: The adrenaline probably in that moment.

BOLDUAN: That's exactly what it is, what adrenaline can do.

BROWN: Just within minutes they were able to lift it, too.

CUOMO: It's amazing.

BOLDUAN: Thank goodness they're OK. Thank you, Pamela.

BROWN: Thank you.

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, we beat the measles, right? It turns out, wrong. The worst outbreak in 20 years is here. The question is obviously why. Dr. Sanjay Gupta is going to tell us.

BOLDUAN: And are you just plain tired of hearing about Miley Cyrus online? There's an app for that now. But first, the all new season of Anthony Bourdain's "PARTS UNKNOWN" premiers this Sunday at 9:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific. We want to give you a look as he explores Jerusalem.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The old city is divided in four quarters, Muslim quarter, there's a Jewish quarter. There's a Christian quarter and there's an Armenian quarter. Each one functions independently, but people that live in the certain area are all from that religion. Now we're walking in the steps of Jesus Christ, right?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So this is Via Dolorosa, which is the last trip Jesus did before he was crucified. So people feel very emotional. People feel like they're in the steps of Mohammed, David or Jesus.

BOURDAIN: Jesus was here. I feel like I should be more something.



BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY, everyone. It is now time for the "Pop Four" and our Nischelle Turner who seems to be surprised that we're coming to you right now.

NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT: I was having a whole conversation with John Berman.

BOLDUAN: That's all right, continue.

TURNER: I'm really pleasantly surprised that the two of them are sitting together in harmony since the Jets and Patriots played last night.

BOLDUAN: There's a reason why the laptop --

CUOMO: It's called mercy.

TURNER: I'm really encouraged by this, guys. I like that --

CUOMO: I'm glad there's optimism for what happened to the Jets.

TURNER: Let's get to the Pop Four this morning. It's Friday our number four story, I ask you a question, do you ever find yourself wishing that Miley could in fact stop. The song we're listening to is "We Can't Stop." Well, if you do, there is now an app for that. It's Google Chrome plus's plug-in called "No Cyrus."

Now the developer claims that it will block any mention of Miley Cyrus twerking or any other ridiculous words and replaces them all, get this with hashtags so you won't see Miley, you'll see hashtag, hashtag, hashtag, next word. I'm just saying it's there.

BOLDUAN: Talk about magic.

TURNER: It's there. All right, the temperature just dropped to 32 degrees in hell, I'm not kidding because I'm about to tell you the celebrity is praising the paparazzi. This is our number three story actor, Hugh Jackman, had a good reason to be grateful to the paps after they helped him find his son. His son got lost while the family was vacationing at the beach in Sydney. They do a lot of crazy stuff, but that is a very good thing.

CUOMO: More proof that Hugh Jackman is one of the nicest people ever.

TURNER: And most beloved. If the paparazzi go out of their way to help you, you know you're a nice guy definitely in Hollywood.

BOLDUAN: It's a pretty high bar. TURNER: Number two, the story we really have been buzzing about this morning, Julie Chen's stunning confession that she had plastic surgery to fix her, quote, "Asian eyes." She revealed her surgery on the "Talk" admitting that she got the procedure after an agent and a news director told her that her eyes would limit her success. John Berman, I know you were saying, I'm really intrigued by this.

BERMAN: I had a friend in college who did a study on this and it's really astounding. It makes you wonder, people, why they would want to change themselves like this.

BOLDUAN: She felt the pressure to succeed.

TURNER: I had the same kind of thing, not eyes but I've had people tell me that my name may be too ethnic and I should go as Renee Turner, my middle name, instead of Nischelle Turner. You do hear that sometimes unfortunately in this business and in this industry.

CUOMO: One of the good signs of culture is that we are moving so much more in the direction of diversity, that people are getting more appreciated than it used to be. Julie is not old but the newer broadcasters. You are respected for what you are differently than what you used to be.

TURNER: You look good, Julie, you definitely didn't need to do that. OK, is Kate Upton Christie Brinkley doppelganger? Kate sure thinks so. This is our number one story. Kate Upton told me that even her mother says the two of them look alike and it's the reason that she rips the runway. Listen.


KATE UPTON: I told remember right before -- I told my mom I wanted to model and she's like you know what? You could, because you kind of resemble Christie Brinkley. We were Googling her and she's presenting my award.


TURNER: Now that award she speaks of is Model of The Year, yes, Kate Upton is Model of the Year. She got it at that this year's Style Awards and if you could believe it. It was the first time those two beauties met each other.

CUOMO: It's a great interview she did with Halle Berry there.

TURNER: That's good, I love that man.

BOLDUAN: But I can't get a break. Anyway, Nischelle, thank you so much. There are worst people to be told you look like.

TURNER: I'm taking that one and I'm just going to lock it down, not say a word, and throw it away.

COUMO: I like when I get told I look like Halle Berry.

BOLDUAN: Or Christie Brinkley.

TURNER: Everyone at home is saying she's crazy if she thinks she looks like Halle Berry.

CUOMO: No, no, on my best day.

BOLDUAN: This Saturday Nischelle will take you inside the 10th Annual Style Awards right here in New York City. It is Saturday night, 7:00 Eastern. You don't want to miss it.

COUMO: Beautiful and stylish. Coming up on NEW DAY, a royal return, Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, makes her first public appearance since giving birth to Prince George.

BOLDUAN: And we're going to take you back to that fire on the Jersey Shore this morning. We are now able to see the true level of devastation that they're facing. You're looking at live aerial pictures over Seaside Heights, New Jersey. We'll go there live next.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's all gone. It's terrible, we lost everything.


CUOMO: The unthinkable, the out of control fire destroys much of this iconic boardwalk on the Jersey Shore and a community forced to somehow rebuild again.

BOLDUAN: Swept away, roads and bridges taken out by the flash floods have not stopped in Colorado. Residents trapped in towns with no way in or out. We're live with the latest.

CUOMO: Outbreak, the U.S. seeing the most measles cases in years. What's behind the sudden resurgence? Dr. Sanjay Gupta with what you need to know. Your NEW DAY continues right now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Putin has invested his credibility in transferring Assad --