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Missing Autistic Boy; Weather Outlook; Monsters from the Deep; CNN Hero Dale Beatty; Bridget Jones is Back

Aired October 18, 2013 - 08:30   ET


MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to NEW DAY. It is Friday, the 18th of October. Time now for the five things you need to know for your new day.

At number one, the U.S. government open and paying its bills, but the threat of another shutdown in 90 days is hanging over Capitol Hill. Texas Senator Ted Cruz refusing to rule it out.

Later today, President Obama will announce his pick for Homeland Security chief, former Pentagon Attorney Jeh Johnson. If confirmed, Johnson will fill the vacancy left by Janet Napolitano.

NSA leaker Edward Snowden says there is zero chance Russia or China could get top secret documents, although Snowden fled U.S. prosecution to Moscow. He told "The New York Times" he didn't take the files with him.

A manhunt in Florida for two convicted killers mistakenly set free. Charles Walker and Joe Jenkins were freed after prison officials received forged documents stating their respective sentences were reduced and granting their release.

Malala meets the queen. The British royals hosting the Pakistani teenager at a reception for youth education and the commonwealth at Buckingham Palace.

We always update those five things to know. So be sure to go to for the very latest.


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: All right, thanks, Mic.

We have an urgent situation that we've been telling you about this morning, a desperate city-wide search for a missing autistic boy. These surveillance images we're showing now -- this is a 14-year-old -- moments before he vanishes, walking out of his Queens school all alone. This isn't about the school doing the wrong thing. It's about finding the boy. There's been no sign of him since. Police are putting their hopes in a new tool -- his mother's voice. Here's CNN's Don Lemon with more.


DON LEMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Inch by inch, street corner by street corner, seemingly everyone in New York City looking for missing 14-year-old Avonte Oquendo.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi, Avonte, it's mom. Come to the flashing lights, Avonte.

LEMON: In Queens, near the school where the autistic boy was last seen two weeks ago, search vans broadcast his mother's voice in hopes he may recognize it and come to them.

LEMON (on camera): How did you come up with that message?

VANESSA FONTAINE, MOTHER OF AVONTE OQUENDO: That is something that I tell him when he comes home from school. I always say, "Hi, Avonte," because I want him to give the response, "Hi, mom." So sometimes he tells me, "Hi, mom.

LEMON (voice-over): This surveillance video, the last anyone has seen of Avonte. He can't communicate verbally. Investigators say that after approaching a security guard who didn't allow him to exit the school, Avonte found an unmonitored side door and vanished.

FONTAINE: He's not supposed to be running through the halls without supervision. He's not supposed to be letting -- walk out the door and you're not stopping him.

LEMON: New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly does not believe the security guard is at fault.

RAY KELLY, POLICE COMMISSIONER, NYPD: We see the action of the security guard on film and also statements by the security agent and other people that we believe that there wasn't any wrongdoing on her part.

LEMON: A source close to the investigation tells CNN, searches are concentrating on a five-block area around the school with particular focus on a marshy landfill. Thinking cameras don't show the child going into the neighborhood, so he may have headed towards the water. But Avonte's father believes he's elsewhere.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So I look at it as part of - it's part of their job to do that. But I'm pretty sure he's not there. He didn't like - he didn't have some kind of affinity towards water, large bodies of water. He wasn't about that.

LEMON: Water, an ominous fear for these parents. For now, they're keeping positive, trying to find one young boy among millions. One family with an entire city behind them.

Don Lemon, CNN, New York.


KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Don, thank you so much. That poor thing.

CUOMO: And we've been seeing the flyers all over the city too, so, obviously, everybody keep their eyes open if they're in this area, and we wish our best for the family. We'll stay on this story.

We'll take a quick break now, though. Coming up on NEW DAY, sea creatures. That's what they're looking that. That's what they're holding there. That's an 18-foot-long fish. They're supposed to lurk deep below the surface, but now we're seeing them more and more. Why? We'll take a look.

BOLDUAN: And Bridget Jones is back, but the newest book leaving some fans upset. Why, oh, why? Well, we're going to talk to the author about her decision to kill off a beloved character. Stay tuned.

CUOMO: What?



BOLDUAN: Exactly how I want to enter into Friday with that song. Welcome back to NEW DAY, everyone. Let's get over to Indra for our forecast, a look at the forecast and what you could be looking at this weekend.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes, and I'm happy that the weekend, there's nothing major out there that anyone needs to be worried about.


PETERSONS:: Just maybe some milder weather. You actually see the entire country and you barely see much on there. I mean you see some flurries around Denver. They're getting their first flurries really of the season right on time. And then if you look all the way into the northeast, you see that system exiting that brought a few scattered showers overnight last night. So that's pretty much it except for when you look at the actually weather pattern itself.

There's actually a series of cold fronts making their way across the country over the next week or so. It's just that each one is so dry they're moisture-starved. You're not seeing a lot of rain out of them. But you are going to start to see a temperature drop as each one separately passes by. So that's the key and why we're talking about this pattern change a little bit.

So there's the one that exited off the northeast tailing (ph) a bit. Yes, still some showers around Texas. Maybe the low that spun off of it bringing a couple of showers in through the Carolinas. The one behind it, if you're in the mid-Atlantic or northeast, look for pretty much the same picture as you saw last night as you go in through Saturday and Sunday.

And then here comes the third guy, and this is the one you really want to pay attention to because it's coming way from Canada. I mean way down, bringing all that cold air with it, and this is going to have a bigger change or a big jump in there, so a lot of the cool air will make its way into the northeast by the end of the week. Next week, though. You got time. BOLDUAN: Next week. But this week's great.

PETERSONS: Yes, perfect.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, Indra.

CUOMO: Stick around. This is a story you're going to want to see. Earlier this week we told you about the giant oarfish. Remember, Mickey was telling us about that. Normally lives thousands of feet below the ocean's surface.


CUOMO: Just turned up in shallow waters off the south coast of California. Now they're studying it.

Well, it's not the only sea creature this week to show up somewhere it normally wouldn't be. So, what's going on? Casey Wian explores.


CASEY WIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It started when a snorkeler came across this 18-foot creature that's likely an example of what ancient mariners called sea serpents.

JIM DINES, NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM, L.A. COUNTY: They seem kind of sea monster-ish, and so it catches a lot of attention. And it's exciting for the scientists, too.

WIAN: Normally found only in the deep ocean, this oarfish was in just 15 feet of water off Catalina. Two days later, this bizarre looking animal washed ashore across the channel on Venice Beach. It's believed to be a rare saber-toothed Stejneger's beaked whale. It's usually found in much colder waters and almost unheard of in southern California.

NICK FASH, EDUCATION SPECIALIST, HEAL THE BAY: They're never seen around here. And to have something this unique wash up, which is a once in a lifetime so far experience for me, was a real treat.

WIAN: Manhattan Beach surfers are used to seeing great white sharks, but not this many.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I've been seeing an abnormally high quantity of great white sharks out here lately. So I figured I'd take a stand- up paddle board out, put my GoPro camera on my head and see if I can get some footage.

WIAN: Did he ever.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Holy (EXPLETIVE DELETED). He's checking me out. Whoo! Oh, my God, right under the board. Oh, my God, look at that. I'm (EXPLETIVE DELETED) shaking like a leaf.

WIAN: So what's going on here? ALEX ARONOFF: I'd say something along the lines of a global climate change. The temperature of ocean currents are definitely changing up a bit.

COURTNEY BELLIG: I don't know. It sounds scary, though, especially with the great whites. I have four little kids out here and I tell them not to go in the water.


WIAN: Scarier than any shark sighting for southern Californians is a theory about the oarfish. There's a Japanese legend that oarfish beach themselves to warn of an impending earthquake. And, in fact, dozens of them did just that in Japan about a year before the devastating Fukushima quake and tsunami in 2011.

DINES: Usually there is some truth behind every legend. In that particular instance, I don't know, it seems a little far-fetched.

WIAN: Scientists don't know why all of this is happening. For now, the Catalina oarfish has been dissected, cut in pieces and frozen so its flesh can be boiled off later and its skeleton reconstructed and mounted. Wonder if that will keep the earthquakes away.

Casey Wian, CNN, Los Angeles.


BOLDUAN: Fascinating. And clearly a lot of theories about what this all means. So, global warming, earthquake, something else. What do you think?

PETERSONS: Yes. I mean the one thing I took away right away was global warming, a lot of people disagree. But you're talking about oarfish like warm water. You have sharks that like cold water. So you really can't have these all be in the exact same place with two different water temperatures. So I --

CUOMO: It's about that Fukushima thing about the oarfish that showed up there. What do you - what about that?

PETERSONS: Yes. So that's exactly what I went into. I wanted to kind of look at this legend. And the year before that big tsunami and earthquake there, they actually had a dozen of these come on shore over the year. So kind of looked at what all these animals do. If you actually go -- this is way deep in the water, right? So the theory is, scientists actually believe that they can feel the tectonic plates moving and they kind of scurry. They get scared. So a little bit of legend, a little bit of science. Who knows what you want to do with it. But it intrigued me, right?

So then I went into, OK, well what about whales? Right before New Zealand, they had 170 whales beach 48 hours before that huge earthquake. They say their sinuses get affected by tectonic plates moving and pressure changes and so they get disoriented and they come ashore. So what's left? Sharks. OK, is there any relationship? Magnetic fields. That's how they find their food.


PETERSONS: So a little change, they look for it. What about a big change in magnetic fields? What does that mean for earthquakes in southern California?

PEREIRA: And here I was thinking it was something to do with, not global warming, I was thinking it might have to do with the fact that a lot of our waters are polluted and you look at all of the debris from Fukushima that has changed, you know, things in the Pacific Ocean. I was thinking it was something like that. That's very interesting.

PETERSONS: You know -

CUOMO: So does that mean an earthquake's coming?

BOLDUAN: We had an earth -

PETERSONS: Well, yes.


PETERSONS: One hundred and seventy years or so is about the average that we see a big one in southern California over the San Andreas Faults. We are about 300 years overdue. So everyone's talking -

PEREIRA: Luckily they had that "great shake-out."

PETERSONS: My favorite analogy, it's like a 15-month-old pregnant woman. That's the best I've heard.


PEREIRA: Oh, overdue.

BOLDUAN: Over -- that's the understatement of overdue.


CUOMO: Hopefully the science suggestion is off, because we don't want to see anything happen, but thank you for digging into that.

PEREIRA: Exactly.

BOLDUAN: Thank you.

PETERSON: We hope we're wrong.

BOLDUAN: Really fascinating.

PEREIRA: Fascinating.

BOLDUAN: Scientists get to look at it. Cool.

CUOMO: Got to start paying more attention to your weather casts. Boy, there's a lot of science there.

We're shining the spotlight - here's a good one for you - we're shining the spotlight on the top 10 CNN heroes of 2013 as you vote online. Remember Anderson came on and told you how to do it? You can pick the one who inspires you the most. This week, here's who we're spotlighting, a veteran whose hometown came together to thank him, and he paid it forward. Here's CNN hero Dale Beatty.


DALE BEATTY: There's thousands of veterans right here in our midst. People don't realize the need that's out there. I sat down with my battle buddy, John, and we decided to level the playing field. Purple Heart Homes can help any service connected disabled veteran, regardless of their age or war.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the young man, why we're all here today.

BEATTY: Just getting the community engaged, to get a ramp built or a foreclosed home remodeled or an entire house built from the ground up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I had narrow doorways that I couldn't get through. I had to crawl in on my hands and knees. To have them build a whole new bathroom was unbelievable.

BEATTY: We want to make their life easier, safer, just better. And their emotions are being rehabbed, as well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I did three tours in Vietnam. For 35 years, no one cared. Purple Heart Homes said welcome home. It's great to be home after 40 years.

BEATTY: Regardless of when you served, we're all the same. They just need to know that somebody does care about them.


CUOMO: Amazing.

BOLDUAN: Uh-huh.

CUOMO: Right? Everything he's given already and he gives more.

BOLDUAN: Yes, that's absolutely right.

CUOMO: So, who will win the CNN Hero of the Year? The beautiful part, you get to decide. Go to online, and, obviously, no losers in this group.

BOLDUAN: Yes, vote early, vote often.

CUOMO: Next up on NEW DAY, the author of the Bridget Jones' novels, Helen Fielding. She is here. Why did she decide to kill off one of the most beloved characters? Readers up in arms. We're going to talk about it.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Narrow doorways until I couldn't get through. I had to crawl in on my hands and knees. To have them build a whole new bathroom was unbelievable.

DALE BEATTY, VETERAN: We want to make their life easier, safer, just better. And their emotions are being rehabbed, as well.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I did three tours in Vietnam. For 35 years, no one cared. Purple Heart Home said welcome home. It's great to be home after 40 years.

BEATTY: Regardless of when you served, we're all the same. They just need to know that somebody does care about them.


CUOMO: Amazing. Right? Everything he has given already and he gives more.

BOLDUAN: Yes, that's absolutely right.

CUOMO: So who will win the CNN Hero of the Year, the beautiful part -- you get to decide. Go to online, and obviously, no losers in this group.

BOLDUAN: Yes. Vote early, vote often.

Next up on NEW DAY, the author of the Bridget Jones' novels, Helen Fielding -- she is here. Why did she decide to kill off one of the most beloved characters? Readers -- up in arms. We're going to talk about it.



She is one of the most prominent single women in the world of fiction and movies -- singletons. We all thought that she found her man, despite all her faults.


COLIN FIRTH, ACTOR: I like you. Very much.

RENEE ZELLWEGER, ACTRESS: Apart from the smoking and the drinking and the Vulcan mother and the verbal diary.

FIRTH: No, I like you very much just as you are.


PEREIRA: Didn't we all just fall in love with him -- so very dreamy. Yes, Bridget Jones settled down years ago, but a new book revealed some pretty major changes for the character that led her back into the dating scene. The new book is "Bridget Jones: Mad about the Boy," and the book's author Helen Fielding is here with me this morning. What a delight to meet you and to spend time with you.

HELEN FIELDING, AUTHOR: Nice to see you too.

PEREIRA: Fourteen years I don't know where the time has gone. Do you feel the same way?

FIELDING: I can't believe it it's that long. I can't.

PEREIRA: Why did you decide to jump back and give Bridget yet another adventure?

FIELDING: Well, it's more a question of why I decided not to just keep on writing the same thing.

PEREIRA: Well OK so let's go there. Sure why not?

FIELDING: Because obviously after the success of the first two books is a big surprise to me and there was quite a lot of pressure to keep churning them out.

PEREIRA: Was the pressure too much?

FIELDING: No, it's just I really care about her as a character. I'm very fond of her and I think she's all about what women really feel like inside in the gap between how we feel we're supposed to be and how we really are. So I just waited until I just really had a story to tell, and stuff I wanted to say. And I wrote it without telling anyone. In the old chair that I wrote the first one and no expectation because nobody knew I was writing it.

PEREIRA: And did you feel less pressure that way because there was no expectation?

FIELDING: No expectation, there was no pressure. Nobody knew. I could just have thrown it away if I wanted to. And that allowed me to just be honest.

PEREIRA: Well then it allowed you to explore -- the 14-year gap gave you a chance to explore a very different world that Bridget now finds herself in. And reentering -- well, we should back up.

We have to talk about Mr. Darcy. And this is a slight spoiler alert for those of you that need to know. What have you done to him? I'm panicking, because I'm in love with him.

FIELDING: I know, I know. It was very sad. I had to call up Colin Firth himself and tell him --

PEREIRA: You've asked Mr. Darcy?

FIELDING: He was dead -- except, of course, it was a fictional character. But I did have to ask him if he was sitting down and he had someone with him. PEREIRA: And did he?


PEREIRA: So to that end, you wanted to give an opportunity to see Bridget as a single mother. She is now older and she has children. But why not just get a divorce? Please, you could have kept him alive.

FIELDING: But Mark Darcy, even though he was wearing a reindeer sweater when she first met him, is the quintessential gentleman.


FIELDING: He's a decent man. And that's why everyone cares about him so much. He would never leave her with two small children. And so, as I said to Colin, his memory lives on in the new book.

PEREIRA: One of the other things that I think many of us have related to and many women have related to, is this notion that Bridget is struggling and in the new book she's is struggling to be a perfect mom yet struggles to be herself, maintain herself. And living up to the standards that other moms seemingly have created of this perfect image of mom. Is that something that you struggled with, as well?

FIELDING: Yes. I think that the -- the bar is pretty high for women in all sorts of areas. In terms of what you look like, in terms of what you achieve and in terms of parenting, as well. It's almost like -- it's not just loving the kids and them all hanging out. It's -- I've got this mother in the book, perfect Nicolette, who of course Bridget keeps calling Nicorette. But she sees her children as corporate products.


FIELDING: And the play date for team building exercises and you know, Bridget is always buying self-help books, "One-Two-Three, Easier, Happier Parenting". Now you talk in a voice mail voice for the children and go, "Come to the table, one, two," and then think what am I going to do when I get to three. Come to the table will you."

And it's just -- it's not like --

PEREIRA: It's not real.

FIELDING: It's not real. And what they really like is just the real moments.


All right so before we go, any chance we're going to see it on the big screen and will we see more adventures of Bridget -- another book, another movie, what do you think?

FIELDING: Well, if it does make the big screen, and I don't know whether it will, we've got Colin Firth, the memory of Mr. Darcy. We've got Daniel Cleaver. We've got a new love interest, a younger man called Rockster (ph) and yet another love interest who is a sort of Bond-like figure called Mr. Wallacher (ph), so there could be a perfect storm of really hot men there. And I want to be at the casting.

PEREIRA: Would you invite me, as well?


PEREIRA: All right. We've just decided. Kate, we'll invite you along, as well. What a pleasure, Helen Fielding. The new book is out right now.


PEREIRA: Kate and Chris, over to you.

BOLDUAN: I know a lot of people fell in love with Bridget Jones, but I'm falling in love with Helen Fielding, she's so fabulous.

CUOMO: It's a good interview. Mick really brought her out.

BOLDUAN: Good stuff.

CUOMO: Yes, take a break here.

Coming up on NEW DAY, we've heard a lot about the bad coming out of the shutdown right. But what about the good? It turns out there was some good, it came not from a politician, but someone like you. We'll tell you about it.


CUOMO: All right. Time for "The Good Stuff". You ready? The shutdown hurt a lot of Americans including the people we owe the most too -- our troops, right. Well, one waitress in New Hampshire -- listen to what she does -- determined to make sure that they wouldn't get hurt. Her name is Sarah Hoildahl. She was working her usual lunch shift. Two National Guard members sit down in her section. Take a listen.


SARAH HOILDAHL, WAITRESS: You know, they were looking through the menu and they were trying to decide what to get. She had mentioned something about the furlough, you know, we're not getting paid. And it was like, oh, geez. I was just thinking to myself, and I was like you know, I'm going to buy their food today. Good karma, do something nice for someone else.


CUOMO: Exactly. When the meal was over, instead of a check, Hoildahl brought the soldiers a note. It read "Thanks to the government shutdown, the people like you to protect this country are not getting paid. However, I still am. Lunch is on moi." And that wasn't easy for Hoildahl. She is a single mother of a toddler and in the end she says the soldiers' reaction made it all worth it.


HOILDAHL: I came out and they were out front waiting for me and they instantly just came up and said "Sarah" and they hugged me and just their reaction was worth everything. It was like I did this huge thing and it was like I just bought you lunch, but thank you.


CUOMO: No, thank you, Sara Hoildahl.

PEREIRA: Thank you.

CUOMO: You are an American and you did the right thing.

BOLDUAN: Another stuff with "The Good Stuff" for you today.

CUOMO: What have you got?

BOLDUAN: Grandma B -- my grandmother turns 100 years old today.

PEREIRA: Happy birthday.

BOLDUAN: Doesn't act a day over 60. We just had to take a moment to honor and celebrate a wonderful, wonderful woman. We love you.

CUOMO: Happy birthday. Look at those great cheeks.

BOLDUAN: She's fabulous.

PEREIRA: Get on a plane so you can give her a squeeze.

BOLDUAN: Done and done.

Let's go now to Carol Costello in the "NEWSROOM" -- hey Carol.

CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: Happy birthday, Grandma B. That was awesome.

BOLDUAN: Thanks Carol.

COSTELLO: Thanks, guys. Have a great weekend. "NEWSROOM" starts now.

Good morning, I'm Carol Costello. Thank you so much for joining me.

We begin in Florida where an intense manhunt is now under way for two escaped killers. One of those men, Charles Walker, was convicted of killing a man in his early 20s. That's him on the left. On the right is Joseph Jenkins. Jenkins killed a man in front of his nine-year-old son.