Those of us here in the Nightly newsroom are wishing our anchorman and his family a happy Thanksgiving today. And we will humbly attempt to hold down the fort in his absence. Like our colleagues in the Washington bureau (see Gena Fitzgerald's post below), the gang here in New York is feasting on catered turkey and green bean casserole. Having subbed this morning on the Today show, this is my second turkey dinner today. And I am having a third this evening at home (not a word!).
On a more serious note... my mind is on friends and family in New Orleans and along the Gulf Coast. And we begin our broadcast this evening with a look at how the survivors of Hurricane Katrina are finding things to be thankful for this year despite all the hardship. Take for example Waveland, Mississippi, where the St. Clare Catholic School and Church were completely wiped out. Yet today the church parishioners have come together to serve a Thanksgiving dinner to hundreds of the displaced. And in New Orleans we check in with families who are getting by on turkey sandwiches while spending the day cleaning out wrecked homes. Martin Savidge brings us these stories of resiliency tonight.
Also... you may have heard about this if you were watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade. In Times Square an accident with one of the balloons sent two people to the hospital. The whole thing was captured on home video. Apparently a wind gust blew a giant M&M into a light post that then fell on two people watching the parade. Fortunately both people appear to be OK.
And in Iraq... the holiday afforded no break for American soldiers. There were two deadly car bombs today. In one case... American troops appear to have been the target. One car bomb exploded outside a hospital where the soldiers were delivering gifts to children to mark the holiday. Mike Boettcher is in Baghdad for us tonight. Also from Iraq... Jim Maceda spends time with soldiers from the Third Infantry Division. More than half of these soldiers are there on their second tour. They talk to us tonight about their views on the war, how things have changed over the last year and what troop morale is like today.
Hope you all will join us tonight... and to everyone, a very happy Thanksgiving.