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Ryan Lochte Says He Broke Down When He Found Out He Was Having a Boy

ABC News(NEW YORK) —  Ryan Lochte and his fiancee Kayla Rae Reid are having a boy.

Lochte told ABC News about having a son when he joined reporters Michael Rothman and Charli James in the pool to promote the new PowerBar “Clean Start Pledge.”

The setting was Aqua studio in New York City and Lochte said the PowerBar campaign is a propos given his tumultuous 2016, which he is eager to put behind him. Lochte admitted last summer that he lied about “one part” of a story where he and fellow U.S. Olympic teammates had claimed that they were held up at gunpoint. Lochte later took responsibility and admitted he made a “big mistake.”

“Everyone deserves a clean start,” he said of his new campaign. “I am putting 2016 in the past. … And my clean start is a family, ’cause now I’m gonna be a father!”

Getting deeper into his personal life, the six-time gold medalist said he got emotional both times — finding out his fiancee was pregnant and then a few days ago when they found out the gender of the baby.

“We want definitely a unique name,” he said. “My biggest thing I knew when I found out I was going to have a kid was I’m going to spoil that kid rotten. Not with material things, I don’t believe in that, it’s definitely going to be with love. That’s what I got spoiled with growing up.”

“I’ve wanted this for the past six years, but hadn’t found the right [partner],” he said of fatherhood.

When he first found out Kayla was pregnant, he said it took a minute for the realization to set in, then he basically tackled her with excitement, before the duo shed some happy tears about becoming parents.

“I was doing ‘Dancing With the Stars’ and I came back from rehearsal … she was like, ‘Hey, I have something to tell you,'” he explained. “I was like, ‘No you’re not, stop joking with me’ … Then it hit me! … We seriously held each other and started crying.”

He even said he “lost it” yet again when the duo were at the doctors days later and heard the heartbeat during the ultrasound.

 In fact, Lochte’s excited for all that comes with being a parent, even changing diapers. “I’ve been practicing, so I’m ready!” he added.

He’s also started preparing by waking himself up in the middle of the night by setting an alarm, so he’s used to waking up.

“I’ll wake up to anything,” he said of being a light sleeper and being more than happy to get up to feed or change a crying baby.

Then, there’s Lochte’s hope that a move to Los Angeles will result in an acting career. He doesn’t quite know what roles he’s going to look for just yet, but he is pitching a reality show about himself, his son and his fiancee that he said could possibly be titled, “Lochte in Love.” That’s a working title, nothing set in stone, he joked.

 With all that’s going on in his life, swimming will not be taking a backseat. Lochte said he’ll definitely continue to train for the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.

“I’ve always said I’ll retire when swimming stops being fun,” he said. It hasn’t stopped being fun just yet.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Woman Abducted as a Newborn Defends Her Alleged Kidnapper: ‘She Will Always Be Mom’

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Eighteen years ago, Alexis Manigo was snatched from a Florida hospital as a newborn and spent her entire life being raised by a woman, Gloria Williams, who wasn’t her mom.

Recently, after DNA testing, Manigo, who was given the name Kamiyah Mobley at birth, discovered her true identity.

But instead of harboring ill will towards the suspect, Manigo, who is still reeling from the discovery, called her “a great mother.”

“That’s all I want people to know,” she told Good Morning America in an exclusive interview. “She was a great mother.”

“I will never have malice for her,” she added. “I will always love her.”

Williams, 51, allegedly snatched Manigo from a hospital in Jacksonville, Florida just hours after she was born, and has been arrested and charged with the kidnapping. Williams, who has not yet entered a plea, will make her first court appearance today.

Earlier this month, authorities revealed that they used DNA testing to determine that Manigo was not Williams’ biological daughter, and that the teenager was the victim of a decades-old kidnapping case.

“I understand what she did was wrong, but just don’t lock her up and throw away the key,” Manigo pleaded.

“She loved me for 18 years, she cared about me for 18 years,” Manigo said. “I just want people to realize that.”

“She made one mistake, but I was loved,” Manigo said. “From that one mistake I was given the best life.”

“I had everything I ever needed, wanted, I had love especially. There is no price you can put on the love that was given to me,” Manigo said.

Manigo added that the attention that she has been getting has been “overwhelming.” Last week, she was joyfully reunited with her birth mother and father, saying, “when you find a new family, it’s just more love.”

She added that the reunion was bittersweet because it also meant that the woman who raised her was taken away from her.

“For some it’s a victory,” Manigo said. “But at the same time you do take a loss when someone so dear to you is just snatched like that.”

Manigo said she is still processing everything that has happened, and though she identified herself as “Alexis Manigo,” she said she is fine with people calling her by her birth name.

“It’s all a bit much for me, but if you know me by ‘Alexis’ continue to call me ‘Alexis’, if you know me as ‘Kamiyah,’ then you can call me that to. I’m not really specific right now. I haven’t even thought about that, I’m just taking it one step at a time,” Manigo said. “I don’t want any malice with anybody.”

“Regardless of what you refer to me to, I know who I am, I’ve never questioned myself,” Manigo said. “I know who I am as a person.”

Williams was extradited from South Carolina to Florida on Tuesday but Manigo said, “I still think of her as mom, she will always be ‘Mom.'”

Manigo said it has been hard for her to deal with the comments and judgment that has been directed on Williams and her online.

“They want me to hate her, and it’s not in me to,” Manigo said.

Manigo’s attorney, Justin Bamberg, told GMA that people online have made hurtful comments directed towards Manigo and Williams.

“Until you are in that situation, I don’t think you should be so quick to judge,” Bamberg said. “I want you to ask yourself, ‘What would I say if I woke up tomorrow and I found out that my mother was not my mother?'”

“Anybody can be bold behind the keyboard, that’s the new thing,” Bamberg added. “Be upset, but also be mindful that there is an innocent 18-year-old who is left to deal with this.”

ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

“GMA” Workout Wednesday: Celebrity Trainer Harley Pasternak Leads ‘Legsanity’ Routine

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak is bringing his exclusive “Legsanity” workout to a special GMA live stream.

“This workout is all about toning, tightening, sculpting an incredible lower body,” he told GMA. “The lower body is the foundation of the whole body. Without strong legs, there is no strong body.”

Pasternak, a best-selling author and Fitbit Ambassador, is leading a workout live-streamed on ABCNews.com/live and on the GMA Facebook page Wednesday. Fitbit is a sponsor of Good Morning America.

Watch the video above to join the live-stream workout. Read below for all you need to know about the routine and more tips from Pasternak.

It’s important to mix up your routine to see results, Pasternak says.

“Doing the same workout every time can be repetitive — and boring. It also might cause you to plateau, or worse, cause injury. So try to keep things fresh by mixing cardio with weight training,” he told GMA.

What You Need

  • Space to move around
  • Mat

‘Legsanity’ Live Stream Overview

The overview and tips below are provided from the trainer and have been edited for clarity.


Start with cardio warm up, alternating between these five movements for 1 minute each:

  • March in Place
  • Jog
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Jump Imaginary Rope
  • Shadow Box

Then, it’s onto “Legsanity.” Do 1 minute of each move with a 1-minute cardio burst in between.

  • Body-Weight Squat
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Reverse Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Skater Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Jump Squat
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Jump Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Good Mornings
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Glute/Ham Walk
  • March/Jump Rope

Pasternak’s Tips for the Workout

  • Keep breathing.
  • Focus on your form.
  • Go at your own pace and listen to your body. If your ankles or knees are hurting, try modifying the routine to see if there’s something more comfortable for your joints.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/17/17

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Miami 109, Houston 103
Toronto 119, Brooklyn 109
Dallas 99, Chicago 98
San Antonio 122, Minnesota 114
Denver 127, LA Lakers 121

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Columbus 4, Carolina 1
Dallas 7, NY Rangers 6
Toronto 4, Buffalo 3
Ottawa 6, St. Louis 4
New Jersey 4, Minnesota 3
Calgary 5, Florida 2
Chicago 6, Colorado 4
Vancouver 1, Nashville 0
Anaheim 2, Tampa Bay 1 (OT)

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(5) Kentucky 88, Mississippi St. 81
(17) Wisconsin 68, Michigan 64
(21) Purdue 91, Illinois 68

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

General Motors Jobs Touted by Trump Were in Works for Years

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Plans announced Tuesday by automotive giant General Motors to add or keep 7,000 American jobs and invest $1 billion in United States manufacturing — later touted by President-elect Donald Trump on Twitter as part of a “big jobs push back into the U.S.” — were actually “years in the making,” according to the company.

In a statement, GM said the investments will “cover multiple new vehicle, advanced technology and component projects,” culminating in 1,500 of the jobs, a combination of new and existing positions. The Detroit-based manufacturer said it also intends to shift some production work from Mexico back to the U.S.

The timing of the announcement raised suggestions that claims by Trump contributed to the company’s actions. Throughout his presidential campaign and ensuing transition, Trump made the collapse of American manufacturing and outsourcing of jobs — particularly to Mexico and China — a focal point of his platform and his administration’s plans.

Just two weeks ago, Trump criticized GM — whose brands include Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac — on Twitter, writing that the company was “sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border,” and threatened a tariff if it did not choose to make the cars in the U.S.

But a GM spokesperson said that “product development decisions are made well in advance” and that “[Tuesday’s] announcement is no different.”

When questioned what role Trump played in the development, the spokesperson added that “all of the decisions behind [Tuesday’s] announcement are good business decisions and they have been in the works for some time.”

Nevertheless, over two tweets this morning, Trump appeared to take credit for the action. “With all of the jobs I am bringing back into the U.S. (even before taking office), with all of the new auto plants coming back into our….. country and with the massive cost reductions I have negotiated on military purchases and more, I believe the people are seeing ‘big stuff,'” he wrote.

This afternoon, he specifically called attention to GM’s announcement in an additional tweet, writing, “Thank you to General Motors… for starting the big jobs push back into the U.S.!”

In reference to a Trump tweet from January 3, GM said that Tuesday’s “announcement has no bearing on the Cruze.” The company previously insinuated that the president-elect’s tweet was factually incorrect, saying it assembles the Cruze sedan in the United States for the domestic market and the hatchback version in Mexico for foreign markets.

Despite Trump’s previous criticism, domestic job creation and investment are not entirely new developments for the company. In the release, GM notes that it announced a previous $2.9 billion investment in 2016 and has put $21 billion into its domestic operations since 2009.

Further, in the last four years, the company has “created 25,000 jobs in the U.S.” and “added nearly $3 billion in annual wages and benefits to the U.S. economy,” according to their statement.

“As the U.S. manufacturing base increases its competitiveness, we are able to further increase our investment, resulting in more jobs for America and better results for our owners,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra in a press release. “The U.S. is our home market and we are committed to growth that is good for our employees, dealers, and suppliers and supports our continued effort to drive shareholder value.”

Back in December however, GM said it would reduce its workforce by 1,300 at a plant in Detroit come March 2017, and would temporarily cut production at additional U.S. factories in January.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul to Miss 6 to 8 Weeks for Thumb Surgery

Scott Halleran/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul will be sidelined for six to eight weeks to undergo surgery for a sprained left thumb, the team said.

The surgery will repair a torn ligament in the thumb, an injury he sustained in Monday night’s 29-14 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

According to ESPN, Paul had previously had surgery for a thumb (his right thumb) in the 2012 offseason. Dr. Steve Shin performed the surgery and will also perform surgery for Paul’s left thumb on Wednesday.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mom’s Plea for Acceptance for Son with Autism

Nicole Duggan(DUBLIN) — One mom’s New Year’s resolution has been far more successful than she planned.

“I never expected it to get around Ireland, let alone get to America,” Nicole Duggan told ABC News.

The Cork, Ireland, mom’s Facebook post is being shared around the world. Her son, Riley, is 3 years old and has autism.

“I have wanted to post it for a long time, and I never did,” Duggan said. “But I just decided that now was the time and 2017 was the year we would make a difference and try to spread awareness.”

The post is intended for parents, not children.

“I always find it is the parents that have a problem,” she said. “We have been in situations where parents have pulled their child away from Riley in playgrounds and it is so hurtful for me. But thankfully, Riley doesn’t notice as such.”

“Kids never treat him any differently. The innocence is lovely. They love to play and so does he, and that is all they see,” Duggan said.

Her post reads in part: “My little boy is just like your child, he loves to dance, he loves to be cuddled, he cries when he falls, and he adores Mickey Mouse. He is however ‘wired differently.'”

“The small things we take for granted every day are the hardest things for him to cope with. Different lights, sounds, smells or even the look of something can cause an overload that is too hard for an adult to deal with, let alone my little boy. ‘Normal things’ such as going shopping, playing in a kids play zone, or even a hair cut can be unbearable for him,” the Facebook post continues.

“To the people that stare at him because he hums, join in with his little singsong, because in his eyes he is singing the best song in the world.”

“To the mothers that pull their children away from him, you are creating the bullys [sic] of the future,” she said in the post.

She told ABC News, “I am only doing what all parents of kids with autism do, and that is ask for acceptance. I’m just crazy enough to put it online.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

POLL: Trump Remains Unpopular, with the Presidency in Hand

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Donald Trump enters office as the most unpopular of at least the last seven newly elected presidents, a new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds, with ratings for handling the transition that are also vastly below those of his predecessors.

Forty percent of Americans in the national survey approve of the way Trump has handled the transition, half as many as the 80 percent who approved of Barack Obama’s preparations to take office. Trump also far trails George W. Bush (72 percent transition approval), Bill Clinton (81 percent) and George H.W. Bush (82 percent) on this measure.

Similarly, just 40 percent in this poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, approve of most of Trump’s cabinet choices — trailing his four predecessors by anywhere from 19 to 26 percentage points.

Identical to these ratings, just 40 percent see Trump favorably overall. That’s 21 points behind Obama’s departing favorability rating (his best since November 2009) and by far the lowest popularity for an incoming president in polling since 1977. Previous start-of-presidency favorability ratings have ranged from 56 percent for George W. Bush to 79 percent for Obama.

Consider the flipside: Just 9 to 20 percent saw Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton or Obama unfavorably as they took office. It was 36 percent for George W. Bush. It’s 54 percent for Trump.

Expectations

Even with those weak ratings, Trump garners high expectations on some issues: Six in 10 Americans expect him to do an excellent or good job on the economy and on jobs alike, and 56 percent expect him to do well in handling terrorism.

On the economy, Trump may get tailwinds: Fifty-one percent say it’s in excellent or good shape, the most since October 2006 in ABC/Post polls. Even still, 63 percent say the country’s seriously off on the wrong track — a view on which Democrats and Republicans have essentially swapped positions since the election, with the biggest change for the party that won the White House.

Positive expectations for Trump drop to around 50 percent on three other issues — helping the middle class, handling the deficit and making Supreme Court appointments. Expectations go negative on four more — handling health care, international crises, race relations and issues of particular concern to women. Expectations of Trump are more negative than positive by 24 points on women’s issues, 37-61 percent, and by 17 points on race relations, 40-57 percent.

Skeptics/Issues

More generally, skepticism about Trump is extensive: Sixty-one percent of Americans lack confidence in him to make the right decisions for the country’s future. Obama was rated as poorly on this measure in the midst of his second term. But he started his presidency with the opposite result — 61 percent confidence.

Fifty-two percent also see Trump as unqualified for office. Still, in a positive trend for him, that’s down from a peak of 64 percent in June.

Results are informed by opposition to many of the incoming administration’s policy plans. Out of eight such policies tested in this survey, majorities support three: Deporting undocumented immigrants who’ve committed crimes (most popular by far, with 72 percent support), renegotiating the NAFTA trade agreement (57 percent) and punishing companies that move jobs overseas (53 percent).

Support goes below 50 percent for repealing Obamacare (a split, 46-47 percent, support-oppose), building a wall on the border with Mexico (37 percent support), withdrawing from the nuclear deal with Iran (37 percent), barring entry to most Muslims who aren’t U.S. citizens (32 percent), and quitting the Paris climate treaty (31 percent). (On Obamacare, two-thirds of those who favor repeal say the law should be replaced with a new one at the same time.)

It’s notable that large majorities oppose two proposals that have been signatures of Trump’s political rise — barring entry of non-U.S. Muslims (63 percent opposed) and building a wall across the border with Mexico (opposed by 60 percent).

Opposition peaks, at 66 percent, to another idea, providing tax breaks for privately funded roads, bridges and transportation projects that would then charge tolls for people who use them.

Another likely policy debate may pose its own risks for Trump. He’s proposed an across-the-board tax cut. Seventy-five percent in this survey support a tax cut for middle- and low-income Americans, but support falls to 48 percent for a business tax cut and just 36 percent for cutting taxes paid by higher-income Americans.

Others

Among other issues:

• Just 35 percent approve of the way Trump’s handled the issue of campaign email hacking, while 54 percent disapprove. Nearly two-thirds think Russia was behind it, and among them, seven in 10 think Russia’s goal was to help Trump win the election. Forty-three percent see Trump as “too friendly” toward Russia; about as many say he’s handling this well.

• Neither the media nor Trump are well rated in their handling of one another, but Trump fares considerably less well. Americans divide essentially evenly on whether the news media are treating Trump fairly or unfairly. But they see Trump’s treatment of the news media as unfair rather than fair by a substantial 57-38 percent margin.

Groups

Evaluations of Trump’s proposed policies and expectations for his presidency vary widely, with no division more prominent than the one between political partisans.

One of the largest rifts by party emerges on Trump’s planned wall along the Mexican border: Seventy-two percent of Republicans support it, most saying they do so strongly, while 87 percent of Democrats are opposed, nearly three-quarters strongly. Partisans split similarly on repealing the Affordable Care Act, with eight in 10 Republicans in favor and three-quarters of Democrats against.

In terms of expectations, nearly all Republicans expect Trump to do an excellent or good job handling the economy and job creation alike, while fewer than three in 10 Democrats say the same. Democrats are the least optimistic about Trump’s potential handling of the health care system, with just 9 percent giving him at least a “good” prospective rating. That compares with 87 percent of Republicans.

Not all of Trump’s plans are welcomed as universally by GOP partisans: Fewer than half of Republicans support the public-private infrastructure plan proposed by his advisers or his previous intention to pull out of the Paris climate agreement. (He’s now said he has an “open mind” about the deal.) For their part, fewer than a quarter of Democrats support either.

Some divisions echo the election. White men without college degrees, a strongly pro-Trump group, support repealing the 2010 health care law by 65-27 percent, while white women with a college degree — who narrowly backed Clinton — mirror them in opposition, 35-63 percent. The pattern repeats in expectations for Trump’s handling of race relations; nearly two-thirds of non-college white men have high expectations, while as many college-educated white women have low ones.

Race itself is a key factor: Compared with whites, nonwhites are 36 points less likely to expect much from Trump in job creation and 30 points less likely to think he’ll do well on race relations. And while support for building the Mexican border wall has increased among whites from 42 to 50 percent since September, it remains extremely unpopular among Hispanics, with just 11 percent support.

There’ll be much measurement of Trump’s job approval in the years ahead, and the best stand-in for that gauge now is approval of his handling of the transition. This peaks at 77 percent among Republicans, 68 percent among strong conservatives and 61 percent among evangelical white Protestants. But it’s just 45 percent in the states Trump won in the presidential election, as well as 42 percent among political independents, with 50 percent disapproving.

Further, whites, a group Trump won by a 20 points in the election (per the exit poll), approve of his work on the transition by a 10-point margin, 52 to 42 percent. That ranges from 64 percent approval among non-college white men to 36 percent among college-educated white women. Seventy-five percent of nonwhites disapprove, including 85 percent of blacks and 76 percent of Hispanics.

Methodology

This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by landline and cellular telephone Jan. 12-15, 2017, in English and Spanish, among a random national sample of 1,005 adults. Results have a margin of sampling error of 3.5 points, including the design effect. Partisan divisions are 31-23-37 percent, Democrats-Republicans-independents.

The survey was produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates of New York, N.Y., with sampling, data collection and tabulation by Abt-SRBI of New York, N.Y.

ABC Breaking News | Latest News Videos

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/16/17

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Atlanta 108, NY Knicks 107
Washington 120, Portland 101
Philadelphia 113, Milwaukee 104
Indiana 98, New Orleans 95
Denver 125, Orlando 112
Boston 108, Charlotte 98
Golden State 126, Cleveland 91
Utah 106, Phoenix 101
LA Clippers 120, Oklahoma City 98

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Buffalo 4, Dallas 1
NY Islanders 4, Boston 0
Detroit 1, Montreal 0
San Jose 5, Winnipeg 2
Tampa Bay 2, LA Kings 1
Pittsburgh 8, Washington 7 (OT)
Edmonton 3, Arizona 1

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(1) Villanova 76, Seton Hall 46
(2) Kansas 76, Iowa St. 72
(7) Creighton 72, (22) Xavier 67
(9) North Carolina 85, Syracuse 68
(13) Butler 88, Marquette 80

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Aaron Rodgers Hasn’t Spoken to His Family in Two Years, Father Confirms

Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — Aaron Rodgers’ father confirms that the family hasn’t spoken to the NFL quarterback for a couple years but says they are “hoping for the best.”

In a New York Times story about the family rift, the NFL star’s dad, Ed Rodgers, said the family hasn’t spoken to the Green Bay quarterback since the end of 2014.

“It’s complicated,” he said.

The public first became aware of a rift in the Rodgers family when Aaron’s younger brother, Jordan, appeared as a contestant on ABC’s reality show The Bachelorette last summer. Before Jordan brought the show’s star JoJo Fletcher to his Chico, California, hometown to meet his family, he told her that Aaron would not be there, explaining that he had chosen to distance himself from his family.

Aaron Rodgers responded at the time by telling ABC affiliate WISN-TV in Milwaukee, “I’ve always found that it’s a little inappropriate to talk publicly about some family matters, so I’m just — I’m not going to speak on those things.”

While admitting that he had not watched The Bachelorette, Aaron added, “I wish him well in the competition.”

The season ended with Jordan proposing to Fletcher. The couple are now planning a wedding later this year.

Ed Rodgers told the Times he would have not chosen to air “public laundry” the way his son Jordan did, but added, “It’s good to have it all come out.”

A rep for Aaron Rodgers did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

But last Thursday at the Packers’ practice facility in Wisconsin, the quarterback, who has been dating actress Olivia Munn since 2014, told the Times, “I just don’t think it’s appropriate talking about family stuff publicly.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Ringling Bros. Pushes Back on Animal Rights Groups’ Claiming Circus Closing as a Win

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The owners of the famed Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus on Monday pushed back against the idea that animal rights protests influenced the company’s decision to end its circus performances in May of this year.

The family-run Feld Entertainment company that owns the 146-year-old circus billed as “the greatest show on Earth” said at a press conference Monday in Florida that animal rights groups should not claim the circus’ closing as a victory.

“This is not a win for animal rights activists,” Kenneth Feld, the company’s CEO said. “This is not a win for anyone.”

“Entertainment has changed,” Feld said of the reason for the closing. “The traditional family unit is different.”

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus has been a frequent target of activists claiming inhumane treatment of animals used in the shows.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the animal rights group that was among the loudest opponents of the circus, claimed a win this weekend in a press release titled, “It’s over for Ringling Bros. Circus.”

“After 36 years of PETA protests, which have awoken the world to the plight of animals in captivity, PETA heralds the end of what has been the saddest show on earth for wild animals, and asks all other animal circuses to follow suit, as this is a sign of changing times,” Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, wrote in a statement.

Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, also applauded the decision, saying, “I applaud their decision to move away from an institution grounded on inherently inhumane wild animal acts.”

Feld for his part said at the press conference that with the circus’ closing, animal rights groups “will need to find a new agenda for fundraising.”

His daughter, Juliette Feld, said the company saw a decline in sales over many years and a more precipitous drop after it announced in 2016 it would stop including elephant acts in performances.

The Felds said their focus now is on more than 400 workers who will be affected by the shutdown and that the company will provide “job placement, interview and resume preparation.”

The company also said it will work to ensure that animals used for the circus are placed in safe homes after the final performance.

“Our commitment to all of our animals is for our lifetime,” Juliette Feld said.

Feld Entertainment was founded nearly 50 years ago with the acquisition of Ringling Bros, according to a company statement. Kenneth Feld has a net worth of roughly $2.7 billion from the circus and entertainment business, according to the Forbes 400 list.

The circus will have its final performance on Long Island at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, on May 21.

The Felds expressed hope that people would visit the circus one last time.

“There are tickets available for the remaining shows,” Kenneth Feld said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Reports: Jose Bautista, Blue Jays Close to Reaching Deal

Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(TORONTO) — Free-agent slugger Jose Bautista is reportedly close to reaching a deal with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Fox Sports reports Bautista, 36, and the Blue Jays were in talks Monday morning over a two-year contract worth up to $40 million.

Back in November, the slugger turned down a one-year, $17.2 million deal from Toronto, pushing him into free agency.

Bautista has been with the Blue Jays for the majority of his professional career, since 2008.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

“DWTS” Peta Murgatroyd Talks ‘Real Life’ Post-Baby Body

Alo Ceballos/GC Images(NEW YORK) — A couple of weeks after welcoming her first child, Dancing With the Stars pro Peta Murgatroyd took to Instagram to get real about her post-baby body.

Murgatroyd and her fiance Maksim Chmerkovskiy welcomed son Shai Aleksander on Jan. 4.

“Real life: I took this photo 8 days post birth. I left the hospital looking 5 months pregnant. Many people think a woman should shrink right back to her pre-birth weight immediately. That is just not the truth for most,” she wrote, alongside a picture of her proudly displaying her body.

She continued, “The female body is incredible and resilient, but healing and strengthening take time. Now it’s time for patience and hard work. Lots of love to all the new mamas out there on the journey.”

Murgatroyd, 30, also added in a hashtag that “shaiiswortheverypound.”

The Dancing duo announced their engagement in December 2015. Six months later, they revealed they were expecting their first child, whom they welcomed earlier this month.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/15/17

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Dallas 98, Minnesota 87
Atlanta 111, Milwaukee 98
Toronto 116, NY Knicks 101
Houston 137, Brooklyn 112
Oklahoma City 122, Sacramento 118
Chicago 108, Memphis 104
Detroit 102, LA Lakers 97

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Washington 5, Philadelphia 0
Minnesota 3, Chicago 2
New Jersey 2, Vancouver 1 (OT)
St. Louis 2, Anaheim 1 (OT)

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE PLAYOFFS

Green Bay 34, Dallas 31
Pittsburgh 18, Kansas City 16

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(22) Cincinnati 55, East Carolina 46
(25) Southern Cal 71, Colorado 68

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Dad’s Heartbreak: Girl He Raised as His Own Was Really Kidnapped as a Newborn

ABC News(WALTERBORO, S.C.) — One father’s joy was another father’s heartbreak, after Charles Manigo learned that the girl he raised and believed to be his own daughter for 18 years was really another man’s child.

“I named her — a name I had for a year. Alexis Kelly,” Manigo said. “She was the love of my life.”

But what Manigo didn’t know was that his former girlfriend, Gloria Williams, had allegedly snatched the girl from a maternity ward, and lied when she told him she’d given birth to the baby when he was away. The girl he called Alexis was really Kamiyah Mobley.

Mobley’s biological father, Craig Aiken, was overjoyed that she’d finally been found, and said that all those years he and her biological mother would celebrate their daughter’s birthday every year and imagine “how it would be if she were here” and “what we would do if she came came back,” he said Friday, after officials announced that the girl was now returned to her birth parents.

“I love her,” Aiken said. “I’m glad to see her. I love her.”

Mobley grew up in Walterboro, South Carolina, thinking that Williams was her biological mother, Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said Friday. He said that she now appears to be a normal 18-year-old woman in good health.

Gloria Williams, 51, is in jail, charged with kidnapping for allegedly taking the newborn from a Jacksonville, Florida, hospital on July 10, 1998.

Manigo and Williams raised her from the time she was a newborn, sharing custody after they split up in 2003, and celebrating milestones together, like her prom, he said.

“The person she called dad for 18 years isn’t her dad,” Manigo said.

Williams was charged with kidnapping at a bond hearing on Friday in South Carolina. Bail was denied and another bond hearing will be held once she is extradited to Jacksonville, Florida, according to the sheriff’s office.

“One of the hardest things she said on Friday was, ‘Dad I love you,’ even though she knows what’s going on,” Manigo said.

“I talk to her every day,” he said. “The attention is overwhelming to her. She’s still processing everything. It’s a shock to me, it’s a bigger shock to her.”

Manigo said that even though he may not be Kamiyah’s biological father, he will always be there for her.

“She’s still my child,” he said. “I understand what’s going on, but she’s still my child.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

British Prime Minister Theresa May to Appear on US Vogue Cover

Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images(LONDON) — British Prime Minister Theresa May is set to be featured on the cover of the U.S. version of Vogue, Downing Street confirmed to BBC, becoming the first prime minister to ever do so.

The spread, orchestrated by British-born editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, will appear in the magazine’s April edition, a spokesman for Downing Street said to BBC.

May posed for renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz, who also photographed First Lady Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton for Vogue.

Since she became prime minister in July, her fashionable footwear has made headlines, particularly her trademark kitten heels. In September, a trade union urged her to ditch her heels for flat shoes in formal meetings to promote equality in the workplace, according to the Guardian.

Margaret Thatcher, the only other female British prime minister, posed for the U.K. version of Vogue several times.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Baby Who Underwent Open Heart Surgery Is Calmed by Watching Dallas Cowboys

Laura Catron(FORT WORTH, Texas) — A Texas 3-month-old who had just undergone her second open-heart surgery couldn’t stop crying even when her mother tried just about everything to soothe her.

Laura Catron was 21 weeks pregnant when the baby she was carrying was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect.

“Every time we kept going to the doctor, we kept finding out it was worse,” the first-time mother recalled to ABC News.

Still, Catron and her husband of nearly two years Bryan, got a glimmer of hope from doctors at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas.

Their daughter Lola, now 3 months old, is to have three open-heart surgeries before she can get a heart transplant. She had her second surgery last week and the third is slated for when she turns 3 years old.

Unfortunately, due to a work commitment Catron’s husband was away while Lola recuperated in the hospital from her second surgery. The baby had just thrown up medication use to soothe post-surgery migraines, and Catron was doing everything she could think of to calm her baby girl down.

“I tried singing. I tried rocking her, putting on cartoons. I put on ‘Paw Patrol,’ she didn’t like it. We were trying everything and then my mom was like, ‘She loves watching football with her dad. Put that on,'” Catron recalled.

And immediately, Lola quieted down.

The Fort Worth, Texas, mother added that her husband and baby Lola have a tradition where Lola dresses up in a Cowboys onesie and watches the game with her dad.

“And she’s quiet all day,” Catron added. “It’s the funniest thing, but she loves it. I always thought it was sitting with her dad.”

The mother filmed exactly what happened so she could share it with her husband and later put it on Facebook where it not only went viral, but got the attention of the Dallas Cowboys organization. They tweeted, “We love Lola, she’s helping us #FinishThisFight.”

They even sent the family Cowboys gear for Lola to wear while she’s watching their games.

Catron told ABC News that although she’s grateful for the Cowboys gift, it’s more important to her to spread awareness of congenital heart defects “because I want someone to either find a cure or find something that can help my daughter.”

“Right now, she can’t play sports [when she grows up,] she won’t be able to have a baby, she won’t be able to live as full as a life as I was able to,” the mother said. “This is really cute story, but I want everyone to know what this is really about for us.”

President-elect Trump Reacts to Civil Rights Icon Who Said His Presidency Not ‘Legitimate’

Rick Diamond/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — President-elect Donald Trump unleashed a Twitter attack on Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis, after the lawmaker said he wouldn’t attend Trump’s inauguration because he doesn’t see him as a “legitimate president.”

Lewis in an interview with NBC on Friday cited Russia’s meddling in the election for his view on the legitimacy of the presidential election results, and his comments stoked controversy with Republicans and debate inside the Democratic Party.

“I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president,” Lewis said.

Trump hit back, slamming Lewis today for “falsely complaining about the election,” and called him “all talk, talk, talk — no action or results!”

Trump’s tweets spurred a backlash on social media, including by some who said Trump was dismissing Lewis’ accomplishments in the struggle for civil rights on the weekend before Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Lewis is one of the last surviving central organizing figures of the U.S. civil rights movement and was beat by police in a march for voting rights on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

Some other critics complained about the president-elect calling Lewis’ congressional district in Georgia “crime infested” and “falling apart.”

Lewis’ has represented his district since 1986, and it includes some of the more affluent areas around Atlanta. It is home to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, several Fortune 500 companies, and well-known universities and colleges including Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, Georgia Tech and Georgia State University, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mom of Twin Separated at Birth Reacts to Emotional ‘GMA’ Reunion: ‘It Didn’t Feel Real’

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Audrey Doering and Gracie Rainsberry, twin sisters separated at birth, are warming the hearts of millions after they reunited for the first time Wednesday on Good Morning America.

The video of the identical 10-year-old girls tearfully embracing was viewed 11 million times on Facebook.

“I am so amazed that so many people have watched it,” Audrey’s mom Jennifer Doering told ABC News. “I am so glad we are able to share this with others. For us, it’s amazing. There’s been an outpouring of true love for our family.”

Audrey and Gracie were separated at birth in China, and then adopted by two different American families who lived hundreds of miles apart.

When Doering became curious about her daughter’s past, she learned through a Chinese researcher that Audrey had a twin, Gracie, who had also been adopted and brought to the U.S. She eventually found Nicole Rainsberry, Gracie’s mother, on Facebook.

Before reuniting face-to-face on “GMA,” the twins used Facetime to communicate.

Shortly after the meeting, Gracie said she was feeling excited and happy.

“It’s very overwhelming,” she said.

Audrey said, “It felt like there was somebody missing.”

“Now, it’s complete,” she added.

Doering said the heartfelt moment almost “didn’t feel real.”

“I was similar to them, overwhelmed,” she said. “I [was] so happy that they were together, finally.”

After their appearance on the show, the two families saw “School of Rock” on Broadway, visited the bright lights of Times Square and enjoyed dinner at Planet Hollywood.

The night ended with a hotel sleepover party between Audrey, Gracie and Gracie’s older sister Chloe, 13.

“They really do have similar interests and tastes in a lot of stuff they do,” Doering said. “As we go on we’ll see it more and more. It’s like someone you’ve always known and they go right together.”

The Doerings and Rainsberrys will vacation in San Diego together in March and have the girls visit one another over the summer, Doering said.

A friend of the Doering family set up a GoFundMe page on behalf of both families. The money raised will go towards travel expenses so the girls can continue to see each other.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/13/17

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
Philadelphia  102  Charlotte       93
Toronto       132  Brooklyn       113
Memphis       110  Houston        105
Minnesota      96  Oklahoma City   86
Milwaukee     116  Miami          108
Boston        103  Atlanta        101
Orlando       115  Portland       109
Cleveland     120  Sacramento     108
Utah          110  Detroit         77

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
Toronto         4  N-Y Rangers   2
Washington      6  Chicago       0
Carolina        5  Buffalo       2
N-Y Islanders   5  Florida       2
Columbus        3  Tampa Bay     1
New Jersey      2  Calgary       1
Arizona         4  Winnipeg      3

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Bus Drivers Working Alongside Silicon Valley Millionaires Struggle to Afford Rent, Some Sleep in Cars

ABC News(SAN FRANCISCO) — Silicon Valley is a shining beacon of American success, home to some of the most profitable and innovative companies in the world, including Google, Facebook, PayPal, Oracle and Apple.

Many employees at these tech giants enjoy large paychecks and a host of perks ranging from free dry cleaning to free food to gyms on site.

But there are thousands of other people working alongside them who don’t make enough money to afford housing near their jobs so many sleep in their cars between shifts. Some sleep in their cars because they are homeless.

Terrence Rollins is a 51-year-old bus driver who drives the shuttles that ferry tech employees across Silicon Valley to company campuses. He only has a few hours a night at home before he has to be back at work.

“I love my job,” Rollins said. “I get up at 3 [a.m.], I make it home about 11, 10 o’clock at night, and I’m constantly traveling. I mean, I have to take care of my family.”

The bus drivers who spoke with ABC News starting in 2015 work for independent contractors hired by tech companies. When we first met these drivers, they said their jobs provided few benefits and didn’t offer paid company holidays.

Some drivers are contracted to work what’s called a “split shift,” meaning they arrive for work at 6 a.m. to take tech employees to their offices, then have to wait around for a number of hours, unpaid, until it’s time to take the employees back home at the end of the day. These drivers work and are paid for a total of eight hours but over a 16-hour period.

They said the houses they can afford on their wages are too far away for them to get home between shifts, so many of them stay in their cars or nap at the bus depot.

In the bus depot where he is based, Rollins said there was one room with two beds for female drivers and another room with two beds for male drivers. But it wasn’t enough to accommodate the 35 to 40 drivers there on any given day.

“It’s just awful when you park inside and you have drivers covering their cars’ [windows] with blankets and towels,” said another driver named Jimmy.

Since ABC News began this report a year and a half ago, some service workers have unionized and their employers have worked with tech companies to raise wages and offer better benefits to many contract workers who lived at the edge of poverty.

These workers are an example of a growing trend in the U.S., in which large corporations contract out service jobs from other companies.

Scott Peebles, another driver ABC News spoke to in 2015, said he had been sleeping on an air mattress in his car for months. Peebles used a windshield reflector to help block out the light from the parking lot streetlamps while he slept.

“This is foreign to me,” he said, gesturing to his car. “It’s not the way you’re supposed to live. No, it’s just a mirror of society that we’re in right now and that’s — I’m probably part of millions of people that are doing this.”

“It’s sad that it comes down to this,” Peebles continued. “I mean, if people would know this, if corporations of businesses they work for, they would probably be aghast that their employees were living in a car or a van.”

At night, if they needed a restroom, the drivers would get out of their cars and walk into the bus depot.

Under union pressures and publicity about drivers receiving few benefits, Facebook now requires contractors to pay contract employees a minimum of $15 an hour, 15 days of paid time off, and a $4,000 stipend for new parents if their contractors don’t provide parental leave. Apple and Google followed suit with announcing 25 percent wage increases for all drivers.

Many security jobs are also now contracted out. Michael Johnson, who worked as a security guard for several companies, told ABC News the job has changed over the years.

“When I first started there were paid vacation, paid holidays, lots of times we got bonuses,” Johnson said. “It was like a regular job, it’s just that you were contract-working. You were treated like one of the gang.”

Eventually, Johnson said at the time he stopped receiving paid vacation time or paid sick leave and the hourly rate dropped.

“It was incredible what was happening,” he said. “It seemed like it just happened overnight.”

In Silicon Valley, amidst the luxury homes, the streets are lined with service workers who live in RVs and trailers.

“The folks that are living in these RVs, they are part of the low-wage economy that’s created around the tech industry,” said activist Derecka Mehrens. “There’s a real connection between these families and what happens in the industry.”

Some experts on contract workers say some of the jobs provide opportunities that didn’t exist before. Arthur Brooks of the Conservative American Enterprise Institute said,many workers “say that it gives them flexibility. Many of them are immigrants.”

But Tamara Draut, Vice President of Demos, a progressive think tank, disagreed that contracting and subcontracting helps workers, arguing that “in each link down that chain, the pressures grow to lower labor costs.”

Irma Alvarado is 72 years old and says she spent her life cleaning the offices at Visa, working the night shift from 6 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. She shares a small house with her children and grandchildren. She is a legal immigrant who says she has lived and worked in the U.S. nearly 30 years.

When ABC News spoke to her in 2015, Alvarado said it was hard to watch Visa employees throw away food she would love to have and to see them take vacations. She said she once saw a $7,000 check lying on a desk, and was surprised at the gap between her pay and theirs.

In a statement to ABC News, Visa said their janitorial staff is contracted through a third party vendor. “All wages, bonuses and benefits are handled directly by the service vendors,” the statement said. “We greatly appreciate their work and dedication to our facilities.”

Her grandchildren say they still believe in the American dream. Her grandson Danny said he would like to be an astronaut one day. But for now, he said he just wants a drawer to himself.

“It’s hard living in the house because you don’t have that much room, gets crowded,” he said. “I would have a drawer to put all my clothes in.”

About half of American adults lived in middle-income households in 2014, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data. Pew Research offers an income calculator feature on their website that allows you to see whether you are part of the American middle class.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Woman Abducted 18 Years Ago as a Newborn Found Living in Another State

ABC News(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) — Authorities have found and identified a woman in South Carolina who was abducted from a Florida hospital more than 18 years ago as a newborn baby.

The woman, named Kamiyah Mobley at birth, was kidnapped on July 10, 1998, just hours after she was born at a Jacksonville hospital, according to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.

She was abducted by a woman, now identified as Gloria Williams, who had posed as a nurse and told Mobley’s mother that the baby had a fever and she needed to take her away, Mike Williams said at a news conference Friday.

Gloria Williams, now 51, was able to walk out of the hospital with Mobley and was never caught — until now. She has been arrested and charged with kidnapping, officials said at the news conference.

Mobley grew up in Walterboro, South Carolina, thinking that Gloria Williams was her biological mother, according to the sheriff. He said that she now appears to be a normal 18-year-old woman in good health.

The sheriff added that Mobley has been living under a different name for the past 18 years. Officials are not releasing her current name in the interest of reducing any further trauma.

Mobley began to suspect a few months ago that she may have been involved in the reported 1998 abduction case, the sheriff said. She recently submitted a DNA sample to authorities and the sample came back positive this past Thursday night, he said.

Mobley’s biological mother, father, grandmother and a couple of close family friends have been notified and they are extremely excited, the sheriff said.

Craig Aiken, Mobley’s biological father, told ABC News Friday he has spoken with Mobley over the phone and on Skype, along with her biological mother.

“It was like the end of a nightmare,” Aiken said. “I can’t even explain it.”

Aiken said that he and Mobley’s biological mother would celebrate her birthday every year and would imagine “how it would be if she were here” and “what we would do if she came came back.”

He added that he expects Mobley to visit her place of birth very soon and that the they would take it “day by day” to slowly “transition back to a happy family.”

Mobley’s biological grandmother, Velma Aiken, told ABC News that the family cried “tears of joy” when they were informed by police that her granddaughter had been found. Velma Aiken said it felt like they had known each other all along.

Although she was “bitter and empty” toward Williams for “stealing” her “grandbaby,” Velma Aiken said she is grateful that Williams was “willing to raise her right.”

Williams was charged with kidnapping at a bond hearing on Friday in South Carolina. Bail was denied and another bond hearing will be held once she is extradited to Jacksonville, Florida, according to the sheriff’s office.

Mobley, who identified herself as “Alexis” in court, began to cry when her mother was denied bond. She told Williams that she is “praying for her.”

“Mama, I love you,” she said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Bush Daughters Pen Letter of Advice to Malia, Sasha Obama on Life After the White House

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Bush, no strangers to life after the White House, have told Malia and Sasha Obama that after Inauguration Day on Jan. 20, they will, “Be writing the story of your lives, beyond the shadow of your famous parents.”

The very personal advice from the twin daughters of President George W. Bush was written to the daughters of President Obama in an open letter published in full by Time magazine.

Bush Hager and Bush, 35, shared the letter just days before the Obama daughters will join what Bush and Hager call the “rarified club” of former First Children, describing it as a club with membership that Malia and Sasha didn’t seek and “one with no guidelines.”

“But you have so much to look forward to,” they wrote, also telling the Obamas, “you will always carry with you the experiences of the past eight years.”

Malia and Sasha, now 18 and 15, respectively, were also welcomed to the White House in 2009 by the Bush twins, both with a personal tour and a letter.

The 2009 letter from the then 27-year-old Bush twins gave the then 10-year-old Malia and 7-year-old Sasha advice like finding loyal friends, sliding down the banister of the White House solarium for fun and taking part in every White House engagement and trip they could.

Their current letter to Malia and Sasha reflects on all the sisters had done during the eight years of their dad’s presidency, from standing with President Obama at the gates of the cell where Nelson Mandela was once imprisoned, to hiking in national parks, and traveling to Liberia and Morocco with their mom, First Lady Michelle Obama.

“We have watched you grow from girls to impressive young women with grace and ease,” Bush Hager and Bush wrote.

When Obama leaves office on Jan. 20, Malia will continue her gap year before attending Harvard University in the fall. Sasha will remain with her parents in Washington, D.C., to finish high school.

“Enjoy college. As most of the world knows, we did,” the Bush twins wrote, acknowledging the occasional news they made as undergrads during their dad’s administration. “And you won’t have the weight of the world on your young shoulders anymore. Explore your passions. Learn who you are. Make mistakes —- you are allowed to.”

Bush Hager, now a correspondent on NBC’s TODAY show, and Bush, co-founder and the CEO of Global Health Corps, ended the letter with a reminder of the bond they share with the Obama girls.

“You stood by as your precious parents were reduced to headlines. Your parents, who put you first and who not only showed you but gave you the world,” they wrote. “As always, they will be rooting for you as you begin your next chapter. And so will we.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/12/17

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Denver 140, Indiana 112
New Orleans 104, Brooklyn 95
NY Knicks 104, Chicago 89
San Antonio 134, LA Lakers 94
Dallas 113, Phoenix 108
Golden State 127, Detroit 107

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Philadelphia 5, Vancouver 4 (SO)
Tampa Bay 4, Buffalo 2
Ottawa 4, Pittsburgh 1
Nashville 2, Boston 1
Minnesota 7, Montreal 1
Dallas 5, Detroit 2
Anaheim 4, Colorado 1
Edmonton 3, New Jersey 2 (OT)
LA Kings  5, St. Louis 1

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(4) UCLA 104, Colorado 89
(5) Gonzaga 93, Loyola Marymount 55
(16) Arizona 91, Arizona St. 75
Iowa 83, (17) Purdue 78
(18) Wisconsin 89, Ohio St. 66
(20) Notre Dame 67, Miami 62
(21) Saint Mary’s (Cal) 74, Portland 33
(22) Cincinnati 66, SMU 64
Utah 86, (25) Southern Cal 64

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Authorities Investigate Video Showing Dog Chained to Moving Trailer

Thinkstock/iStock(FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla.) — Authorities in Florida have launched an investigation after a video emerged on Facebook of a dog chained to the top of a crate being towed by an SUV driving at least 70 mph.

Palm Coast resident Brenna Cronin, 24, shot the video Wednesday afternoon in Flagler County as she and her boyfriend were driving southbound on I-95 toward Daytona Beach. In the video, a dog is seen standing on top of the crate, which contained at least one other animal, while a Chevrolet Tahoe pulls the trailer at high speeds.

Cronin said she and her boyfriend were shocked to see the dog traveling in that manner, so she pulled out her video and began to film it.

“I was just completely outraged and appalled,” she told ABC News Thursday. “I couldn’t believe it.”

Once the driver realized Cronin was filming him, he “gave me the finger,” she said. Cronin said she is “happy” that the video she took led to an investigation of the owner.

“The dog stood up and was looking at me so sad,” she said. “I had to do something.”

As of Thursday afternoon, the Facebook video had been viewed more than 500,000 times, with hundreds of people expressing outrage over the dog’s condition in comments.

The owner, who did not wish to be identified, told ABC Jacksonville affiliate WTLV-TV that it was an “OK” way to transport dogs and that it is “how everybody transports.”

Flagler Animal Services is investigating the video, said Jeffery Ritter, development coordinator for the Flagler Humane Society. The dog seen in the video is a Blue American Pitbull Terrier named Zeus, who does not like to ride in the crate, Ritter said. So his owner, who said he uses the dog for hunting, allows him to ride outside, Ritter said.

A Flagler County ordinance allows people to travel with a dog in that manner as long as the animal is tethered twice to the vehicle. Dogs being transported in the open bed of pickup trucks or any other type of open vehicle must either be confined to a pen or be restrained by a “minimum of two tethers or some other similar method to safely control or restrain the dogs from easily escaping the vehicles,” No. 93-15 S 4, 11-15-93 of the Flagler County Code of Ordinances states.

Zeus was only tethered to the trailer once, Ritter said.

“The driver didn’t have any bad intentions,” he said. “…He honestly didn’t know any better.”

Zeus’ owner is cooperating with the investigation and has agreed to allow animal services to conduct wellness checks, Ritter said.

Once the Humane Society wraps up the investigation, it will turn over its findings to the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office, which will determine if a crime was committed, Flagler Police Chief Mark Strobridge told ABC News. At minimum, Zeus’ owner faces a ticket and fine under the Flagler County Ordinance, Ritter said.

Although it is legal in Flagler County to travel with a dog in an open vehicle, Ritter said the Humane Society “would not recommend it at all” and stressed the “importance of having any pet secured when driving.”

“Don’t let your dog sit in your lap when driving,” he warned pet owners. “Make sure your animal is contained while you travel. It’s dangerous for them as well as you and other drivers.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

8-Year-Old Battling Cancer Gets Wish to See Amazon Shipping Facility

Thinkstock/Ryan McVay(PHOENIX) — An 8-year-old boy’s birthday wish to see an Amazon distribution center has been fulfilled.

Ben Bicknese loves shopping on the e-commerce site so much that he wanted to see where all the magic happens.

“He was just floored,” Ben’s mom Cecilia Bicknese of Tucson, Arizona, told ABC News. “There’s some pictures of his eyes popping out of his head. He was just stunned … he couldn’t believe he was there.”

Ben was diagnosed with Wilms tumor, a type of kidney cancer, in 2014 and had removal surgery that same year. The cancer returned in 2015, and he’s gone through chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Because of Ben’s low immune system, doctors advised against him leaving the house. That’s when his grandparents bought him an iPad to keep him occupied.

“He was online all the time, so he’d shop and figured out what two-day shipping was with Amazon,” Bicknese said of her son. “Then he found the same-day shipping and that blew his mind. He was just obsessed with it. He loves getting packages. He’s just like me.”

Ben became intrigued as to how Amazon handles its customers’ requests and asked his family if he could see one of its fulfillment centers someday.

Bicknese said she reached out to a friend who knew an employee of the company. Amazon then invited the family to its shipping facility in Phoenix on Tuesday — just one day after Ben’s 8th birthday.

“We were incredibly touched by Ben’s story and we were honored to host him, his family and care network at one of our Amazon fulfillment centers in Phoenix for a special behind-the-scenes tour,” a representative of Amazon said in a statement to ABC News. “From his scavenger hunt picking birthday presents to learning how to use the tape machine, we had just as much fun as Ben did — maybe even more! … Ben is definitely an honorary Amazonian and we wish him all the best.”

Amazon also donated 50 Kindle e-readers, Fire tablet devices and $2,500 in content gift cards to Banner Medical Center, where Ben received his treatment in Tucson.

“It was a blessing,” Bicknese said. “It was a really good day for him after a lot of bad days.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Four Charged in Paris Kardashian Robbery

Timothy White/E!(PARIS) — Four people have been charged in France in the connection with alleged robbery of Kim Kardashian West, according to the Paris prosecutor’s office.

A 27-year-old faces charges of complicity with an armed robbery by an organized gang, sequestration and association with criminals, as do a 62-year-old and 63-year-old, authorities said.

Another suspect, 44, has been charged with concealment/fencing by an organized gang and association with criminals.

Six others are still being questioned, authorities said.

Last October, Kardashian West, 35, was allegedly robbed at gunpoint in a Paris apartment she had rented for Fashion Week. The assailants, whom the reality TV star’s publicist described as “armed, masked men dressed as police officers,” allegedly tied up Kardashian West and stole jewelry worth an estimated $10 million.

The French newspaper Le Monde first reported, and Us Weekly has confirmed, a report claiming that one of the 17 suspects arrested in connection with the Oct. 3, 2016 robbery works for the limo company that the Kardashian-Jenner family regularly used during their trips to the French capital.

According to Le Monde, the chauffeur was the last person to drive Kardashian West before the robbery, during which she was bound and held at gunpoint by five masked assailants who made off with an estimated $10 million worth of jewelry. Police are reportedly trying to determine whether the driver passed information to the thieves.

A representative for Kardashian West had no comment on the charges or arrests when reached by ABC News Thursday.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

DOJ Watchdog Launches Investigation into FBI’s Pre-Election Actions

FBI(WASHINGTON) — Department of Justice Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz announced Thursday that his office will launch a review of the actions taken by the FBI and DOJ ahead of November’s election.

The inspector general will look at whether FBI Director James Comey’s press conference and notifications to Congress days prior to the election concerning the Hillary Clinton email probe were appropriate under DOJ guidelines.

The investigation is in response to “numerous” requests from members of congressional oversight committees, various organizations and the public, according to Horowitz.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Two Women Share How They Collectively Lost 100s of Pounds

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Two women who each lost over one hundred pounds shared their secrets and tips for how they were able to shed the weight Thursday on Good Morning America and in People magazine’s “Half Their Size” issue.

“These women have an incredible mindset,” Catherine Kast, staff editor at People magazine said Thursday. “They have developed methods to help them keep [the weight] off.”

Joanne Raymond, 49, a mother of two from Pennsylvania, said that she lost a total of 133 pounds, after going from 249 pounds to her current weight of 116 pounds.

“As I approached 50,” Raymond said, “Looking in the mirror … I was shocked at the belly that I now had, and no clothes fit. … I’ve gained and lost hundreds of pounds and each time I gained it back.”

Raymond said she turned to fitness apps, looking for something that would help her “stay on track.”

“I weigh myself every day,” Raymond added. “When my weight goes up a little bit, I moderate my diet. I’ve been there two other times and I’m not going back. Whatever the number is, I’m not upset by it and I don’t fixate on it. Instead, I use it to empower me to make good choices.”

She said she plans out her meals the night before and relies on an app called MyFitnessPal to track her meals and strictly eats only three meals a day with no snacking in between.

“No snacking at all,” Raymond said. “I used to graze pretty much all day long. It’s about telling myself: ‘You get to eat three times a day. That’s it.'”

Lindita Halimi, 27, an aspiring entertainer from Kosovo in Eastern Europe, lost a total of 130 pounds; dropping from 250 pounds to 120 pounds. She also kept the weight off for four years and can now squat 355 pounds.

Halimi said her poor eating habits began when she was growing up in war-torn Kosovo, where she didn’t know when she would be able to get her next meal.

“We were refugees,” Halimi said. “We boiled leaves, and we ate that just to survive.

“After we all got back home,” Halimi added, “I had this mentality of, ‘Let me eat now ’cause I don’t know when I’m going to eat later.'”

Halimi said she reached her heaviest weight of 250 pounds in her late teens, following years of overeating. She says she hit rock-bottom after she won an Albanian singing competition in 2009.

“Every magazine I was opening, every page I was turning to, there was something about … my weight,” Halimi said, “and all the criticism started to affect me.

“I knew I had to make a change,” she continued. She began her weight-loss journey, crediting working out with transforming her health.

“I drastically changed my diet and started walking since I couldn’t run or jog, but it wasn’t until I started lifting weights that I really lost the weight,” Halimi said. “I like weights because they pump you. They give you energy.”

Both women share their full stories in People magazine’s “Half Their Size,” issue, which is currently on newsstands nationwide.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Prince William Consoles Grieving Girl: ‘I Lost My Mummy’ Too

Matt Dunham – WPA Pool/ Getty Images(LONDON) — Prince William, who rarely speaks about his mother Princess Diana’s death, comforted a young girl who was mourning the loss of her father at a charity event in Stratford, London Wednesday.

“Do you know what happened to me?” William told 9-year old Aoife, who lost her father to pancreatic cancer six years ago. “You know I lost my mummy when I was very young too. I was [15] and my brother was 12. So we lost our mummy when we were young as well.

“Do you speak about your daddy?” William asked the girl. “It’s very important to talk about it. Very, very important.”

William is royal patron of the Child Bereavement U.K. Centre, a charity that helps families deal with the loss of a loved one.

Aoife’s mother, Marie, spoke to journalists after the event and said the conversation almost brought her to tears.

“I couldn’t believe it when he started to talk about his mother. It was very emotional and I was willing myself not to start to cry. I almost did,” she said.

William and Kate met with children at the facility in Stratford Wednesday and encouraged them to create memory jars to help them deal with their grief.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry have made mental health awareness a key focus of their charitable activities this past year and are encouraging children to open up and ask for help if they’re suffering. The royal trio has been praised for their work on mental health and their ability to empathize with young people struggling with life’s challenges.

William admitted to the children he was very angry about his own mother’s death.

“He told us how he felt angry when she died. He very specifically used that word anger, he felt angry about it,” another mother named Lorna said of William’s interaction with the children. “He also told us how important it was to talk about how we feel when we lose someone as he found it very difficult to talk about it.”

“I am telling my children that if they take anything away from this day, it is what he said about how important it is to talk. Kids do not forget that. Sometimes it hurts but we can remember the happy things too. It is so important to talk.”

One of Princess Diana’s closest friends, Julia Samuel, founded the charity in 1994 with Diana’s support. William took over as royal patron of the charity in 2009. William and Kate named Samuel one of Prince George’s godmothers.

William and Harry are commemorating the 20th anniversary of the late Princess Diana’s death later this summer.

The Duchess of Cambridge accompanied William to the engagement in a royal blue coat dress by the designer Eponine.

Earlier in the day, Kate attended her first engagement of the new year. The young mother stopped by the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families’ early years parenting unit and met with young mothers who have had to overcome family life battling addiction and abuse.

Kate encouraged the women, conceding “parenting is tough” no matter who you are or the circumstances you encounter while raising children.

Kate also visited with young mothers of children struggling with personality disorders and mental health challenges and commended them for their work.

“And with the history and all the things and the experiences you’ve all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties, and the lack of support you also received as mothers,” Kate said. “I find it extraordinary how you’ve managed actually. So really well done.”

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Back to the Category List


Ryan Lochte Says He Broke Down When He Found Out He Was Having a Boy

Posted/updated on: January 18, 2017 at 11:30 pm

ABC News(NEW YORK) —  Ryan Lochte and his fiancee Kayla Rae Reid are having a boy.

Lochte told ABC News about having a son when he joined reporters Michael Rothman and Charli James in the pool to promote the new PowerBar “Clean Start Pledge.”

The setting was Aqua studio in New York City and Lochte said the PowerBar campaign is a propos given his tumultuous 2016, which he is eager to put behind him. Lochte admitted last summer that he lied about “one part” of a story where he and fellow U.S. Olympic teammates had claimed that they were held up at gunpoint. Lochte later took responsibility and admitted he made a “big mistake.”

“Everyone deserves a clean start,” he said of his new campaign. “I am putting 2016 in the past. … And my clean start is a family, ’cause now I’m gonna be a father!”

Getting deeper into his personal life, the six-time gold medalist said he got emotional both times — finding out his fiancee was pregnant and then a few days ago when they found out the gender of the baby.

“We want definitely a unique name,” he said. “My biggest thing I knew when I found out I was going to have a kid was I’m going to spoil that kid rotten. Not with material things, I don’t believe in that, it’s definitely going to be with love. That’s what I got spoiled with growing up.”

“I’ve wanted this for the past six years, but hadn’t found the right [partner],” he said of fatherhood.

When he first found out Kayla was pregnant, he said it took a minute for the realization to set in, then he basically tackled her with excitement, before the duo shed some happy tears about becoming parents.

“I was doing ‘Dancing With the Stars’ and I came back from rehearsal … she was like, ‘Hey, I have something to tell you,'” he explained. “I was like, ‘No you’re not, stop joking with me’ … Then it hit me! … We seriously held each other and started crying.”

He even said he “lost it” yet again when the duo were at the doctors days later and heard the heartbeat during the ultrasound.

 In fact, Lochte’s excited for all that comes with being a parent, even changing diapers. “I’ve been practicing, so I’m ready!” he added.

He’s also started preparing by waking himself up in the middle of the night by setting an alarm, so he’s used to waking up.

“I’ll wake up to anything,” he said of being a light sleeper and being more than happy to get up to feed or change a crying baby.

Then, there’s Lochte’s hope that a move to Los Angeles will result in an acting career. He doesn’t quite know what roles he’s going to look for just yet, but he is pitching a reality show about himself, his son and his fiancee that he said could possibly be titled, “Lochte in Love.” That’s a working title, nothing set in stone, he joked.

 With all that’s going on in his life, swimming will not be taking a backseat. Lochte said he’ll definitely continue to train for the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.

“I’ve always said I’ll retire when swimming stops being fun,” he said. It hasn’t stopped being fun just yet.

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Woman Abducted as a Newborn Defends Her Alleged Kidnapper: ‘She Will Always Be Mom’

Posted/updated on: January 18, 2017 at 9:52 am

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Eighteen years ago, Alexis Manigo was snatched from a Florida hospital as a newborn and spent her entire life being raised by a woman, Gloria Williams, who wasn’t her mom.

Recently, after DNA testing, Manigo, who was given the name Kamiyah Mobley at birth, discovered her true identity.

But instead of harboring ill will towards the suspect, Manigo, who is still reeling from the discovery, called her “a great mother.”

“That’s all I want people to know,” she told Good Morning America in an exclusive interview. “She was a great mother.”

“I will never have malice for her,” she added. “I will always love her.”

Williams, 51, allegedly snatched Manigo from a hospital in Jacksonville, Florida just hours after she was born, and has been arrested and charged with the kidnapping. Williams, who has not yet entered a plea, will make her first court appearance today.

Earlier this month, authorities revealed that they used DNA testing to determine that Manigo was not Williams’ biological daughter, and that the teenager was the victim of a decades-old kidnapping case.

“I understand what she did was wrong, but just don’t lock her up and throw away the key,” Manigo pleaded.

“She loved me for 18 years, she cared about me for 18 years,” Manigo said. “I just want people to realize that.”

“She made one mistake, but I was loved,” Manigo said. “From that one mistake I was given the best life.”

“I had everything I ever needed, wanted, I had love especially. There is no price you can put on the love that was given to me,” Manigo said.

Manigo added that the attention that she has been getting has been “overwhelming.” Last week, she was joyfully reunited with her birth mother and father, saying, “when you find a new family, it’s just more love.”

She added that the reunion was bittersweet because it also meant that the woman who raised her was taken away from her.

“For some it’s a victory,” Manigo said. “But at the same time you do take a loss when someone so dear to you is just snatched like that.”

Manigo said she is still processing everything that has happened, and though she identified herself as “Alexis Manigo,” she said she is fine with people calling her by her birth name.

“It’s all a bit much for me, but if you know me by ‘Alexis’ continue to call me ‘Alexis’, if you know me as ‘Kamiyah,’ then you can call me that to. I’m not really specific right now. I haven’t even thought about that, I’m just taking it one step at a time,” Manigo said. “I don’t want any malice with anybody.”

“Regardless of what you refer to me to, I know who I am, I’ve never questioned myself,” Manigo said. “I know who I am as a person.”

Williams was extradited from South Carolina to Florida on Tuesday but Manigo said, “I still think of her as mom, she will always be ‘Mom.'”

Manigo said it has been hard for her to deal with the comments and judgment that has been directed on Williams and her online.

“They want me to hate her, and it’s not in me to,” Manigo said.

Manigo’s attorney, Justin Bamberg, told GMA that people online have made hurtful comments directed towards Manigo and Williams.

“Until you are in that situation, I don’t think you should be so quick to judge,” Bamberg said. “I want you to ask yourself, ‘What would I say if I woke up tomorrow and I found out that my mother was not my mother?'”

“Anybody can be bold behind the keyboard, that’s the new thing,” Bamberg added. “Be upset, but also be mindful that there is an innocent 18-year-old who is left to deal with this.”

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“GMA” Workout Wednesday: Celebrity Trainer Harley Pasternak Leads ‘Legsanity’ Routine

Posted/updated on: January 18, 2017 at 7:51 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak is bringing his exclusive “Legsanity” workout to a special GMA live stream.

“This workout is all about toning, tightening, sculpting an incredible lower body,” he told GMA. “The lower body is the foundation of the whole body. Without strong legs, there is no strong body.”

Pasternak, a best-selling author and Fitbit Ambassador, is leading a workout live-streamed on ABCNews.com/live and on the GMA Facebook page Wednesday. Fitbit is a sponsor of Good Morning America.

Watch the video above to join the live-stream workout. Read below for all you need to know about the routine and more tips from Pasternak.

It’s important to mix up your routine to see results, Pasternak says.

“Doing the same workout every time can be repetitive — and boring. It also might cause you to plateau, or worse, cause injury. So try to keep things fresh by mixing cardio with weight training,” he told GMA.

What You Need

  • Space to move around
  • Mat

‘Legsanity’ Live Stream Overview

The overview and tips below are provided from the trainer and have been edited for clarity.


Start with cardio warm up, alternating between these five movements for 1 minute each:

  • March in Place
  • Jog
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Jump Imaginary Rope
  • Shadow Box

Then, it’s onto “Legsanity.” Do 1 minute of each move with a 1-minute cardio burst in between.

  • Body-Weight Squat
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Reverse Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Skater Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Jump Squat
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Jump Lunge
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Good Mornings
  • March/Jump Rope
  • Glute/Ham Walk
  • March/Jump Rope

Pasternak’s Tips for the Workout

  • Keep breathing.
  • Focus on your form.
  • Go at your own pace and listen to your body. If your ankles or knees are hurting, try modifying the routine to see if there’s something more comfortable for your joints.

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Scoreboard Roundup — 1/17/17

Posted/updated on: January 18, 2017 at 6:37 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Miami 109, Houston 103
Toronto 119, Brooklyn 109
Dallas 99, Chicago 98
San Antonio 122, Minnesota 114
Denver 127, LA Lakers 121

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Columbus 4, Carolina 1
Dallas 7, NY Rangers 6
Toronto 4, Buffalo 3
Ottawa 6, St. Louis 4
New Jersey 4, Minnesota 3
Calgary 5, Florida 2
Chicago 6, Colorado 4
Vancouver 1, Nashville 0
Anaheim 2, Tampa Bay 1 (OT)

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(5) Kentucky 88, Mississippi St. 81
(17) Wisconsin 68, Michigan 64
(21) Purdue 91, Illinois 68

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

General Motors Jobs Touted by Trump Were in Works for Years

Posted/updated on: January 18, 2017 at 4:49 am

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Plans announced Tuesday by automotive giant General Motors to add or keep 7,000 American jobs and invest $1 billion in United States manufacturing — later touted by President-elect Donald Trump on Twitter as part of a “big jobs push back into the U.S.” — were actually “years in the making,” according to the company.

In a statement, GM said the investments will “cover multiple new vehicle, advanced technology and component projects,” culminating in 1,500 of the jobs, a combination of new and existing positions. The Detroit-based manufacturer said it also intends to shift some production work from Mexico back to the U.S.

The timing of the announcement raised suggestions that claims by Trump contributed to the company’s actions. Throughout his presidential campaign and ensuing transition, Trump made the collapse of American manufacturing and outsourcing of jobs — particularly to Mexico and China — a focal point of his platform and his administration’s plans.

Just two weeks ago, Trump criticized GM — whose brands include Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac — on Twitter, writing that the company was “sending Mexican made model of Chevy Cruze to U.S. car dealers-tax free across border,” and threatened a tariff if it did not choose to make the cars in the U.S.

But a GM spokesperson said that “product development decisions are made well in advance” and that “[Tuesday’s] announcement is no different.”

When questioned what role Trump played in the development, the spokesperson added that “all of the decisions behind [Tuesday’s] announcement are good business decisions and they have been in the works for some time.”

Nevertheless, over two tweets this morning, Trump appeared to take credit for the action. “With all of the jobs I am bringing back into the U.S. (even before taking office), with all of the new auto plants coming back into our….. country and with the massive cost reductions I have negotiated on military purchases and more, I believe the people are seeing ‘big stuff,'” he wrote.

This afternoon, he specifically called attention to GM’s announcement in an additional tweet, writing, “Thank you to General Motors… for starting the big jobs push back into the U.S.!”

In reference to a Trump tweet from January 3, GM said that Tuesday’s “announcement has no bearing on the Cruze.” The company previously insinuated that the president-elect’s tweet was factually incorrect, saying it assembles the Cruze sedan in the United States for the domestic market and the hatchback version in Mexico for foreign markets.

Despite Trump’s previous criticism, domestic job creation and investment are not entirely new developments for the company. In the release, GM notes that it announced a previous $2.9 billion investment in 2016 and has put $21 billion into its domestic operations since 2009.

Further, in the last four years, the company has “created 25,000 jobs in the U.S.” and “added nearly $3 billion in annual wages and benefits to the U.S. economy,” according to their statement.

“As the U.S. manufacturing base increases its competitiveness, we are able to further increase our investment, resulting in more jobs for America and better results for our owners,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra in a press release. “The U.S. is our home market and we are committed to growth that is good for our employees, dealers, and suppliers and supports our continued effort to drive shareholder value.”

Back in December however, GM said it would reduce its workforce by 1,300 at a plant in Detroit come March 2017, and would temporarily cut production at additional U.S. factories in January.

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Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul to Miss 6 to 8 Weeks for Thumb Surgery

Posted/updated on: January 17, 2017 at 11:24 pm

Scott Halleran/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) — Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul will be sidelined for six to eight weeks to undergo surgery for a sprained left thumb, the team said.

The surgery will repair a torn ligament in the thumb, an injury he sustained in Monday night’s 29-14 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

According to ESPN, Paul had previously had surgery for a thumb (his right thumb) in the 2012 offseason. Dr. Steve Shin performed the surgery and will also perform surgery for Paul’s left thumb on Wednesday.

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Mom’s Plea for Acceptance for Son with Autism

Posted/updated on: January 17, 2017 at 11:24 pm

Nicole Duggan(DUBLIN) — One mom’s New Year’s resolution has been far more successful than she planned.

“I never expected it to get around Ireland, let alone get to America,” Nicole Duggan told ABC News.

The Cork, Ireland, mom’s Facebook post is being shared around the world. Her son, Riley, is 3 years old and has autism.

“I have wanted to post it for a long time, and I never did,” Duggan said. “But I just decided that now was the time and 2017 was the year we would make a difference and try to spread awareness.”

The post is intended for parents, not children.

“I always find it is the parents that have a problem,” she said. “We have been in situations where parents have pulled their child away from Riley in playgrounds and it is so hurtful for me. But thankfully, Riley doesn’t notice as such.”

“Kids never treat him any differently. The innocence is lovely. They love to play and so does he, and that is all they see,” Duggan said.

Her post reads in part: “My little boy is just like your child, he loves to dance, he loves to be cuddled, he cries when he falls, and he adores Mickey Mouse. He is however ‘wired differently.'”

“The small things we take for granted every day are the hardest things for him to cope with. Different lights, sounds, smells or even the look of something can cause an overload that is too hard for an adult to deal with, let alone my little boy. ‘Normal things’ such as going shopping, playing in a kids play zone, or even a hair cut can be unbearable for him,” the Facebook post continues.

“To the people that stare at him because he hums, join in with his little singsong, because in his eyes he is singing the best song in the world.”

“To the mothers that pull their children away from him, you are creating the bullys [sic] of the future,” she said in the post.

She told ABC News, “I am only doing what all parents of kids with autism do, and that is ask for acceptance. I’m just crazy enough to put it online.”

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POLL: Trump Remains Unpopular, with the Presidency in Hand

Posted/updated on: January 17, 2017 at 7:58 am

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Donald Trump enters office as the most unpopular of at least the last seven newly elected presidents, a new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds, with ratings for handling the transition that are also vastly below those of his predecessors.

Forty percent of Americans in the national survey approve of the way Trump has handled the transition, half as many as the 80 percent who approved of Barack Obama’s preparations to take office. Trump also far trails George W. Bush (72 percent transition approval), Bill Clinton (81 percent) and George H.W. Bush (82 percent) on this measure.

Similarly, just 40 percent in this poll, produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates, approve of most of Trump’s cabinet choices — trailing his four predecessors by anywhere from 19 to 26 percentage points.

Identical to these ratings, just 40 percent see Trump favorably overall. That’s 21 points behind Obama’s departing favorability rating (his best since November 2009) and by far the lowest popularity for an incoming president in polling since 1977. Previous start-of-presidency favorability ratings have ranged from 56 percent for George W. Bush to 79 percent for Obama.

Consider the flipside: Just 9 to 20 percent saw Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton or Obama unfavorably as they took office. It was 36 percent for George W. Bush. It’s 54 percent for Trump.

Expectations

Even with those weak ratings, Trump garners high expectations on some issues: Six in 10 Americans expect him to do an excellent or good job on the economy and on jobs alike, and 56 percent expect him to do well in handling terrorism.

On the economy, Trump may get tailwinds: Fifty-one percent say it’s in excellent or good shape, the most since October 2006 in ABC/Post polls. Even still, 63 percent say the country’s seriously off on the wrong track — a view on which Democrats and Republicans have essentially swapped positions since the election, with the biggest change for the party that won the White House.

Positive expectations for Trump drop to around 50 percent on three other issues — helping the middle class, handling the deficit and making Supreme Court appointments. Expectations go negative on four more — handling health care, international crises, race relations and issues of particular concern to women. Expectations of Trump are more negative than positive by 24 points on women’s issues, 37-61 percent, and by 17 points on race relations, 40-57 percent.

Skeptics/Issues

More generally, skepticism about Trump is extensive: Sixty-one percent of Americans lack confidence in him to make the right decisions for the country’s future. Obama was rated as poorly on this measure in the midst of his second term. But he started his presidency with the opposite result — 61 percent confidence.

Fifty-two percent also see Trump as unqualified for office. Still, in a positive trend for him, that’s down from a peak of 64 percent in June.

Results are informed by opposition to many of the incoming administration’s policy plans. Out of eight such policies tested in this survey, majorities support three: Deporting undocumented immigrants who’ve committed crimes (most popular by far, with 72 percent support), renegotiating the NAFTA trade agreement (57 percent) and punishing companies that move jobs overseas (53 percent).

Support goes below 50 percent for repealing Obamacare (a split, 46-47 percent, support-oppose), building a wall on the border with Mexico (37 percent support), withdrawing from the nuclear deal with Iran (37 percent), barring entry to most Muslims who aren’t U.S. citizens (32 percent), and quitting the Paris climate treaty (31 percent). (On Obamacare, two-thirds of those who favor repeal say the law should be replaced with a new one at the same time.)

It’s notable that large majorities oppose two proposals that have been signatures of Trump’s political rise — barring entry of non-U.S. Muslims (63 percent opposed) and building a wall across the border with Mexico (opposed by 60 percent).

Opposition peaks, at 66 percent, to another idea, providing tax breaks for privately funded roads, bridges and transportation projects that would then charge tolls for people who use them.

Another likely policy debate may pose its own risks for Trump. He’s proposed an across-the-board tax cut. Seventy-five percent in this survey support a tax cut for middle- and low-income Americans, but support falls to 48 percent for a business tax cut and just 36 percent for cutting taxes paid by higher-income Americans.

Others

Among other issues:

• Just 35 percent approve of the way Trump’s handled the issue of campaign email hacking, while 54 percent disapprove. Nearly two-thirds think Russia was behind it, and among them, seven in 10 think Russia’s goal was to help Trump win the election. Forty-three percent see Trump as “too friendly” toward Russia; about as many say he’s handling this well.

• Neither the media nor Trump are well rated in their handling of one another, but Trump fares considerably less well. Americans divide essentially evenly on whether the news media are treating Trump fairly or unfairly. But they see Trump’s treatment of the news media as unfair rather than fair by a substantial 57-38 percent margin.

Groups

Evaluations of Trump’s proposed policies and expectations for his presidency vary widely, with no division more prominent than the one between political partisans.

One of the largest rifts by party emerges on Trump’s planned wall along the Mexican border: Seventy-two percent of Republicans support it, most saying they do so strongly, while 87 percent of Democrats are opposed, nearly three-quarters strongly. Partisans split similarly on repealing the Affordable Care Act, with eight in 10 Republicans in favor and three-quarters of Democrats against.

In terms of expectations, nearly all Republicans expect Trump to do an excellent or good job handling the economy and job creation alike, while fewer than three in 10 Democrats say the same. Democrats are the least optimistic about Trump’s potential handling of the health care system, with just 9 percent giving him at least a “good” prospective rating. That compares with 87 percent of Republicans.

Not all of Trump’s plans are welcomed as universally by GOP partisans: Fewer than half of Republicans support the public-private infrastructure plan proposed by his advisers or his previous intention to pull out of the Paris climate agreement. (He’s now said he has an “open mind” about the deal.) For their part, fewer than a quarter of Democrats support either.

Some divisions echo the election. White men without college degrees, a strongly pro-Trump group, support repealing the 2010 health care law by 65-27 percent, while white women with a college degree — who narrowly backed Clinton — mirror them in opposition, 35-63 percent. The pattern repeats in expectations for Trump’s handling of race relations; nearly two-thirds of non-college white men have high expectations, while as many college-educated white women have low ones.

Race itself is a key factor: Compared with whites, nonwhites are 36 points less likely to expect much from Trump in job creation and 30 points less likely to think he’ll do well on race relations. And while support for building the Mexican border wall has increased among whites from 42 to 50 percent since September, it remains extremely unpopular among Hispanics, with just 11 percent support.

There’ll be much measurement of Trump’s job approval in the years ahead, and the best stand-in for that gauge now is approval of his handling of the transition. This peaks at 77 percent among Republicans, 68 percent among strong conservatives and 61 percent among evangelical white Protestants. But it’s just 45 percent in the states Trump won in the presidential election, as well as 42 percent among political independents, with 50 percent disapproving.

Further, whites, a group Trump won by a 20 points in the election (per the exit poll), approve of his work on the transition by a 10-point margin, 52 to 42 percent. That ranges from 64 percent approval among non-college white men to 36 percent among college-educated white women. Seventy-five percent of nonwhites disapprove, including 85 percent of blacks and 76 percent of Hispanics.

Methodology

This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by landline and cellular telephone Jan. 12-15, 2017, in English and Spanish, among a random national sample of 1,005 adults. Results have a margin of sampling error of 3.5 points, including the design effect. Partisan divisions are 31-23-37 percent, Democrats-Republicans-independents.

The survey was produced for ABC News by Langer Research Associates of New York, N.Y., with sampling, data collection and tabulation by Abt-SRBI of New York, N.Y.

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Scoreboard Roundup — 1/16/17

Posted/updated on: January 17, 2017 at 7:59 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Atlanta 108, NY Knicks 107
Washington 120, Portland 101
Philadelphia 113, Milwaukee 104
Indiana 98, New Orleans 95
Denver 125, Orlando 112
Boston 108, Charlotte 98
Golden State 126, Cleveland 91
Utah 106, Phoenix 101
LA Clippers 120, Oklahoma City 98

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Buffalo 4, Dallas 1
NY Islanders 4, Boston 0
Detroit 1, Montreal 0
San Jose 5, Winnipeg 2
Tampa Bay 2, LA Kings 1
Pittsburgh 8, Washington 7 (OT)
Edmonton 3, Arizona 1

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(1) Villanova 76, Seton Hall 46
(2) Kansas 76, Iowa St. 72
(7) Creighton 72, (22) Xavier 67
(9) North Carolina 85, Syracuse 68
(13) Butler 88, Marquette 80

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Aaron Rodgers Hasn’t Spoken to His Family in Two Years, Father Confirms

Posted/updated on: January 16, 2017 at 1:14 pm

Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images(NEW YORK) — Aaron Rodgers’ father confirms that the family hasn’t spoken to the NFL quarterback for a couple years but says they are “hoping for the best.”

In a New York Times story about the family rift, the NFL star’s dad, Ed Rodgers, said the family hasn’t spoken to the Green Bay quarterback since the end of 2014.

“It’s complicated,” he said.

The public first became aware of a rift in the Rodgers family when Aaron’s younger brother, Jordan, appeared as a contestant on ABC’s reality show The Bachelorette last summer. Before Jordan brought the show’s star JoJo Fletcher to his Chico, California, hometown to meet his family, he told her that Aaron would not be there, explaining that he had chosen to distance himself from his family.

Aaron Rodgers responded at the time by telling ABC affiliate WISN-TV in Milwaukee, “I’ve always found that it’s a little inappropriate to talk publicly about some family matters, so I’m just — I’m not going to speak on those things.”

While admitting that he had not watched The Bachelorette, Aaron added, “I wish him well in the competition.”

The season ended with Jordan proposing to Fletcher. The couple are now planning a wedding later this year.

Ed Rodgers told the Times he would have not chosen to air “public laundry” the way his son Jordan did, but added, “It’s good to have it all come out.”

A rep for Aaron Rodgers did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

But last Thursday at the Packers’ practice facility in Wisconsin, the quarterback, who has been dating actress Olivia Munn since 2014, told the Times, “I just don’t think it’s appropriate talking about family stuff publicly.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Ringling Bros. Pushes Back on Animal Rights Groups’ Claiming Circus Closing as a Win

Posted/updated on: January 16, 2017 at 1:15 pm

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — The owners of the famed Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus on Monday pushed back against the idea that animal rights protests influenced the company’s decision to end its circus performances in May of this year.

The family-run Feld Entertainment company that owns the 146-year-old circus billed as “the greatest show on Earth” said at a press conference Monday in Florida that animal rights groups should not claim the circus’ closing as a victory.

“This is not a win for animal rights activists,” Kenneth Feld, the company’s CEO said. “This is not a win for anyone.”

“Entertainment has changed,” Feld said of the reason for the closing. “The traditional family unit is different.”

The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus has been a frequent target of activists claiming inhumane treatment of animals used in the shows.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the animal rights group that was among the loudest opponents of the circus, claimed a win this weekend in a press release titled, “It’s over for Ringling Bros. Circus.”

“After 36 years of PETA protests, which have awoken the world to the plight of animals in captivity, PETA heralds the end of what has been the saddest show on earth for wild animals, and asks all other animal circuses to follow suit, as this is a sign of changing times,” Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, wrote in a statement.

Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society of the United States, also applauded the decision, saying, “I applaud their decision to move away from an institution grounded on inherently inhumane wild animal acts.”

Feld for his part said at the press conference that with the circus’ closing, animal rights groups “will need to find a new agenda for fundraising.”

His daughter, Juliette Feld, said the company saw a decline in sales over many years and a more precipitous drop after it announced in 2016 it would stop including elephant acts in performances.

The Felds said their focus now is on more than 400 workers who will be affected by the shutdown and that the company will provide “job placement, interview and resume preparation.”

The company also said it will work to ensure that animals used for the circus are placed in safe homes after the final performance.

“Our commitment to all of our animals is for our lifetime,” Juliette Feld said.

Feld Entertainment was founded nearly 50 years ago with the acquisition of Ringling Bros, according to a company statement. Kenneth Feld has a net worth of roughly $2.7 billion from the circus and entertainment business, according to the Forbes 400 list.

The circus will have its final performance on Long Island at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, on May 21.

The Felds expressed hope that people would visit the circus one last time.

“There are tickets available for the remaining shows,” Kenneth Feld said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Reports: Jose Bautista, Blue Jays Close to Reaching Deal

Posted/updated on: January 16, 2017 at 10:05 am

Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(TORONTO) — Free-agent slugger Jose Bautista is reportedly close to reaching a deal with the Toronto Blue Jays.

Fox Sports reports Bautista, 36, and the Blue Jays were in talks Monday morning over a two-year contract worth up to $40 million.

Back in November, the slugger turned down a one-year, $17.2 million deal from Toronto, pushing him into free agency.

Bautista has been with the Blue Jays for the majority of his professional career, since 2008.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

“DWTS” Peta Murgatroyd Talks ‘Real Life’ Post-Baby Body

Posted/updated on: January 16, 2017 at 10:08 am

Alo Ceballos/GC Images(NEW YORK) — A couple of weeks after welcoming her first child, Dancing With the Stars pro Peta Murgatroyd took to Instagram to get real about her post-baby body.

Murgatroyd and her fiance Maksim Chmerkovskiy welcomed son Shai Aleksander on Jan. 4.

“Real life: I took this photo 8 days post birth. I left the hospital looking 5 months pregnant. Many people think a woman should shrink right back to her pre-birth weight immediately. That is just not the truth for most,” she wrote, alongside a picture of her proudly displaying her body.

She continued, “The female body is incredible and resilient, but healing and strengthening take time. Now it’s time for patience and hard work. Lots of love to all the new mamas out there on the journey.”

Murgatroyd, 30, also added in a hashtag that “shaiiswortheverypound.”

The Dancing duo announced their engagement in December 2015. Six months later, they revealed they were expecting their first child, whom they welcomed earlier this month.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/15/17

Posted/updated on: January 16, 2017 at 6:09 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Dallas 98, Minnesota 87
Atlanta 111, Milwaukee 98
Toronto 116, NY Knicks 101
Houston 137, Brooklyn 112
Oklahoma City 122, Sacramento 118
Chicago 108, Memphis 104
Detroit 102, LA Lakers 97

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Washington 5, Philadelphia 0
Minnesota 3, Chicago 2
New Jersey 2, Vancouver 1 (OT)
St. Louis 2, Anaheim 1 (OT)

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE PLAYOFFS

Green Bay 34, Dallas 31
Pittsburgh 18, Kansas City 16

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(22) Cincinnati 55, East Carolina 46
(25) Southern Cal 71, Colorado 68

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Dad’s Heartbreak: Girl He Raised as His Own Was Really Kidnapped as a Newborn

Posted/updated on: January 15, 2017 at 10:36 pm

ABC News(WALTERBORO, S.C.) — One father’s joy was another father’s heartbreak, after Charles Manigo learned that the girl he raised and believed to be his own daughter for 18 years was really another man’s child.

“I named her — a name I had for a year. Alexis Kelly,” Manigo said. “She was the love of my life.”

But what Manigo didn’t know was that his former girlfriend, Gloria Williams, had allegedly snatched the girl from a maternity ward, and lied when she told him she’d given birth to the baby when he was away. The girl he called Alexis was really Kamiyah Mobley.

Mobley’s biological father, Craig Aiken, was overjoyed that she’d finally been found, and said that all those years he and her biological mother would celebrate their daughter’s birthday every year and imagine “how it would be if she were here” and “what we would do if she came came back,” he said Friday, after officials announced that the girl was now returned to her birth parents.

“I love her,” Aiken said. “I’m glad to see her. I love her.”

Mobley grew up in Walterboro, South Carolina, thinking that Williams was her biological mother, Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams said Friday. He said that she now appears to be a normal 18-year-old woman in good health.

Gloria Williams, 51, is in jail, charged with kidnapping for allegedly taking the newborn from a Jacksonville, Florida, hospital on July 10, 1998.

Manigo and Williams raised her from the time she was a newborn, sharing custody after they split up in 2003, and celebrating milestones together, like her prom, he said.

“The person she called dad for 18 years isn’t her dad,” Manigo said.

Williams was charged with kidnapping at a bond hearing on Friday in South Carolina. Bail was denied and another bond hearing will be held once she is extradited to Jacksonville, Florida, according to the sheriff’s office.

“One of the hardest things she said on Friday was, ‘Dad I love you,’ even though she knows what’s going on,” Manigo said.

“I talk to her every day,” he said. “The attention is overwhelming to her. She’s still processing everything. It’s a shock to me, it’s a bigger shock to her.”

Manigo said that even though he may not be Kamiyah’s biological father, he will always be there for her.

“She’s still my child,” he said. “I understand what’s going on, but she’s still my child.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

British Prime Minister Theresa May to Appear on US Vogue Cover

Posted/updated on: January 15, 2017 at 10:54 pm

Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images(LONDON) — British Prime Minister Theresa May is set to be featured on the cover of the U.S. version of Vogue, Downing Street confirmed to BBC, becoming the first prime minister to ever do so.

The spread, orchestrated by British-born editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, will appear in the magazine’s April edition, a spokesman for Downing Street said to BBC.

May posed for renowned photographer Annie Leibovitz, who also photographed First Lady Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton for Vogue.

Since she became prime minister in July, her fashionable footwear has made headlines, particularly her trademark kitten heels. In September, a trade union urged her to ditch her heels for flat shoes in formal meetings to promote equality in the workplace, according to the Guardian.

Margaret Thatcher, the only other female British prime minister, posed for the U.K. version of Vogue several times.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Baby Who Underwent Open Heart Surgery Is Calmed by Watching Dallas Cowboys

Posted/updated on: January 15, 2017 at 11:19 pm

Laura Catron(FORT WORTH, Texas) — A Texas 3-month-old who had just undergone her second open-heart surgery couldn’t stop crying even when her mother tried just about everything to soothe her.

Laura Catron was 21 weeks pregnant when the baby she was carrying was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect.

“Every time we kept going to the doctor, we kept finding out it was worse,” the first-time mother recalled to ABC News.

Still, Catron and her husband of nearly two years Bryan, got a glimmer of hope from doctors at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas.

Their daughter Lola, now 3 months old, is to have three open-heart surgeries before she can get a heart transplant. She had her second surgery last week and the third is slated for when she turns 3 years old.

Unfortunately, due to a work commitment Catron’s husband was away while Lola recuperated in the hospital from her second surgery. The baby had just thrown up medication use to soothe post-surgery migraines, and Catron was doing everything she could think of to calm her baby girl down.

“I tried singing. I tried rocking her, putting on cartoons. I put on ‘Paw Patrol,’ she didn’t like it. We were trying everything and then my mom was like, ‘She loves watching football with her dad. Put that on,'” Catron recalled.

And immediately, Lola quieted down.

The Fort Worth, Texas, mother added that her husband and baby Lola have a tradition where Lola dresses up in a Cowboys onesie and watches the game with her dad.

“And she’s quiet all day,” Catron added. “It’s the funniest thing, but she loves it. I always thought it was sitting with her dad.”

The mother filmed exactly what happened so she could share it with her husband and later put it on Facebook where it not only went viral, but got the attention of the Dallas Cowboys organization. They tweeted, “We love Lola, she’s helping us #FinishThisFight.”

They even sent the family Cowboys gear for Lola to wear while she’s watching their games.

Catron told ABC News that although she’s grateful for the Cowboys gift, it’s more important to her to spread awareness of congenital heart defects “because I want someone to either find a cure or find something that can help my daughter.”

“Right now, she can’t play sports [when she grows up,] she won’t be able to have a baby, she won’t be able to live as full as a life as I was able to,” the mother said. “This is really cute story, but I want everyone to know what this is really about for us.”

President-elect Trump Reacts to Civil Rights Icon Who Said His Presidency Not ‘Legitimate’

Posted/updated on: January 14, 2017 at 8:30 pm

Rick Diamond/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — President-elect Donald Trump unleashed a Twitter attack on Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis, after the lawmaker said he wouldn’t attend Trump’s inauguration because he doesn’t see him as a “legitimate president.”

Lewis in an interview with NBC on Friday cited Russia’s meddling in the election for his view on the legitimacy of the presidential election results, and his comments stoked controversy with Republicans and debate inside the Democratic Party.

“I don’t see this president-elect as a legitimate president,” Lewis said.

Trump hit back, slamming Lewis today for “falsely complaining about the election,” and called him “all talk, talk, talk — no action or results!”

Trump’s tweets spurred a backlash on social media, including by some who said Trump was dismissing Lewis’ accomplishments in the struggle for civil rights on the weekend before Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Lewis is one of the last surviving central organizing figures of the U.S. civil rights movement and was beat by police in a march for voting rights on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

Some other critics complained about the president-elect calling Lewis’ congressional district in Georgia “crime infested” and “falling apart.”

Lewis’ has represented his district since 1986, and it includes some of the more affluent areas around Atlanta. It is home to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, several Fortune 500 companies, and well-known universities and colleges including Emory University, Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College, Georgia Tech and Georgia State University, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Mom of Twin Separated at Birth Reacts to Emotional ‘GMA’ Reunion: ‘It Didn’t Feel Real’

Posted/updated on: January 14, 2017 at 3:28 pm

ABC News(NEW YORK) — Audrey Doering and Gracie Rainsberry, twin sisters separated at birth, are warming the hearts of millions after they reunited for the first time Wednesday on Good Morning America.

The video of the identical 10-year-old girls tearfully embracing was viewed 11 million times on Facebook.

“I am so amazed that so many people have watched it,” Audrey’s mom Jennifer Doering told ABC News. “I am so glad we are able to share this with others. For us, it’s amazing. There’s been an outpouring of true love for our family.”

Audrey and Gracie were separated at birth in China, and then adopted by two different American families who lived hundreds of miles apart.

When Doering became curious about her daughter’s past, she learned through a Chinese researcher that Audrey had a twin, Gracie, who had also been adopted and brought to the U.S. She eventually found Nicole Rainsberry, Gracie’s mother, on Facebook.

Before reuniting face-to-face on “GMA,” the twins used Facetime to communicate.

Shortly after the meeting, Gracie said she was feeling excited and happy.

“It’s very overwhelming,” she said.

Audrey said, “It felt like there was somebody missing.”

“Now, it’s complete,” she added.

Doering said the heartfelt moment almost “didn’t feel real.”

“I was similar to them, overwhelmed,” she said. “I [was] so happy that they were together, finally.”

After their appearance on the show, the two families saw “School of Rock” on Broadway, visited the bright lights of Times Square and enjoyed dinner at Planet Hollywood.

The night ended with a hotel sleepover party between Audrey, Gracie and Gracie’s older sister Chloe, 13.

“They really do have similar interests and tastes in a lot of stuff they do,” Doering said. “As we go on we’ll see it more and more. It’s like someone you’ve always known and they go right together.”

The Doerings and Rainsberrys will vacation in San Diego together in March and have the girls visit one another over the summer, Doering said.

A friend of the Doering family set up a GoFundMe page on behalf of both families. The money raised will go towards travel expenses so the girls can continue to see each other.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/13/17

Posted/updated on: January 14, 2017 at 1:29 pm

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
Philadelphia  102  Charlotte       93
Toronto       132  Brooklyn       113
Memphis       110  Houston        105
Minnesota      96  Oklahoma City   86
Milwaukee     116  Miami          108
Boston        103  Atlanta        101
Orlando       115  Portland       109
Cleveland     120  Sacramento     108
Utah          110  Detroit         77

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
Toronto         4  N-Y Rangers   2
Washington      6  Chicago       0
Carolina        5  Buffalo       2
N-Y Islanders   5  Florida       2
Columbus        3  Tampa Bay     1
New Jersey      2  Calgary       1
Arizona         4  Winnipeg      3

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Bus Drivers Working Alongside Silicon Valley Millionaires Struggle to Afford Rent, Some Sleep in Cars

Posted/updated on: January 13, 2017 at 11:26 pm

ABC News(SAN FRANCISCO) — Silicon Valley is a shining beacon of American success, home to some of the most profitable and innovative companies in the world, including Google, Facebook, PayPal, Oracle and Apple.

Many employees at these tech giants enjoy large paychecks and a host of perks ranging from free dry cleaning to free food to gyms on site.

But there are thousands of other people working alongside them who don’t make enough money to afford housing near their jobs so many sleep in their cars between shifts. Some sleep in their cars because they are homeless.

Terrence Rollins is a 51-year-old bus driver who drives the shuttles that ferry tech employees across Silicon Valley to company campuses. He only has a few hours a night at home before he has to be back at work.

“I love my job,” Rollins said. “I get up at 3 [a.m.], I make it home about 11, 10 o’clock at night, and I’m constantly traveling. I mean, I have to take care of my family.”

The bus drivers who spoke with ABC News starting in 2015 work for independent contractors hired by tech companies. When we first met these drivers, they said their jobs provided few benefits and didn’t offer paid company holidays.

Some drivers are contracted to work what’s called a “split shift,” meaning they arrive for work at 6 a.m. to take tech employees to their offices, then have to wait around for a number of hours, unpaid, until it’s time to take the employees back home at the end of the day. These drivers work and are paid for a total of eight hours but over a 16-hour period.

They said the houses they can afford on their wages are too far away for them to get home between shifts, so many of them stay in their cars or nap at the bus depot.

In the bus depot where he is based, Rollins said there was one room with two beds for female drivers and another room with two beds for male drivers. But it wasn’t enough to accommodate the 35 to 40 drivers there on any given day.

“It’s just awful when you park inside and you have drivers covering their cars’ [windows] with blankets and towels,” said another driver named Jimmy.

Since ABC News began this report a year and a half ago, some service workers have unionized and their employers have worked with tech companies to raise wages and offer better benefits to many contract workers who lived at the edge of poverty.

These workers are an example of a growing trend in the U.S., in which large corporations contract out service jobs from other companies.

Scott Peebles, another driver ABC News spoke to in 2015, said he had been sleeping on an air mattress in his car for months. Peebles used a windshield reflector to help block out the light from the parking lot streetlamps while he slept.

“This is foreign to me,” he said, gesturing to his car. “It’s not the way you’re supposed to live. No, it’s just a mirror of society that we’re in right now and that’s — I’m probably part of millions of people that are doing this.”

“It’s sad that it comes down to this,” Peebles continued. “I mean, if people would know this, if corporations of businesses they work for, they would probably be aghast that their employees were living in a car or a van.”

At night, if they needed a restroom, the drivers would get out of their cars and walk into the bus depot.

Under union pressures and publicity about drivers receiving few benefits, Facebook now requires contractors to pay contract employees a minimum of $15 an hour, 15 days of paid time off, and a $4,000 stipend for new parents if their contractors don’t provide parental leave. Apple and Google followed suit with announcing 25 percent wage increases for all drivers.

Many security jobs are also now contracted out. Michael Johnson, who worked as a security guard for several companies, told ABC News the job has changed over the years.

“When I first started there were paid vacation, paid holidays, lots of times we got bonuses,” Johnson said. “It was like a regular job, it’s just that you were contract-working. You were treated like one of the gang.”

Eventually, Johnson said at the time he stopped receiving paid vacation time or paid sick leave and the hourly rate dropped.

“It was incredible what was happening,” he said. “It seemed like it just happened overnight.”

In Silicon Valley, amidst the luxury homes, the streets are lined with service workers who live in RVs and trailers.

“The folks that are living in these RVs, they are part of the low-wage economy that’s created around the tech industry,” said activist Derecka Mehrens. “There’s a real connection between these families and what happens in the industry.”

Some experts on contract workers say some of the jobs provide opportunities that didn’t exist before. Arthur Brooks of the Conservative American Enterprise Institute said,many workers “say that it gives them flexibility. Many of them are immigrants.”

But Tamara Draut, Vice President of Demos, a progressive think tank, disagreed that contracting and subcontracting helps workers, arguing that “in each link down that chain, the pressures grow to lower labor costs.”

Irma Alvarado is 72 years old and says she spent her life cleaning the offices at Visa, working the night shift from 6 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. She shares a small house with her children and grandchildren. She is a legal immigrant who says she has lived and worked in the U.S. nearly 30 years.

When ABC News spoke to her in 2015, Alvarado said it was hard to watch Visa employees throw away food she would love to have and to see them take vacations. She said she once saw a $7,000 check lying on a desk, and was surprised at the gap between her pay and theirs.

In a statement to ABC News, Visa said their janitorial staff is contracted through a third party vendor. “All wages, bonuses and benefits are handled directly by the service vendors,” the statement said. “We greatly appreciate their work and dedication to our facilities.”

Her grandchildren say they still believe in the American dream. Her grandson Danny said he would like to be an astronaut one day. But for now, he said he just wants a drawer to himself.

“It’s hard living in the house because you don’t have that much room, gets crowded,” he said. “I would have a drawer to put all my clothes in.”

About half of American adults lived in middle-income households in 2014, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data. Pew Research offers an income calculator feature on their website that allows you to see whether you are part of the American middle class.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Woman Abducted 18 Years Ago as a Newborn Found Living in Another State

Posted/updated on: January 13, 2017 at 11:26 pm

ABC News(JACKSONVILLE, Fla.) — Authorities have found and identified a woman in South Carolina who was abducted from a Florida hospital more than 18 years ago as a newborn baby.

The woman, named Kamiyah Mobley at birth, was kidnapped on July 10, 1998, just hours after she was born at a Jacksonville hospital, according to Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams.

She was abducted by a woman, now identified as Gloria Williams, who had posed as a nurse and told Mobley’s mother that the baby had a fever and she needed to take her away, Mike Williams said at a news conference Friday.

Gloria Williams, now 51, was able to walk out of the hospital with Mobley and was never caught — until now. She has been arrested and charged with kidnapping, officials said at the news conference.

Mobley grew up in Walterboro, South Carolina, thinking that Gloria Williams was her biological mother, according to the sheriff. He said that she now appears to be a normal 18-year-old woman in good health.

The sheriff added that Mobley has been living under a different name for the past 18 years. Officials are not releasing her current name in the interest of reducing any further trauma.

Mobley began to suspect a few months ago that she may have been involved in the reported 1998 abduction case, the sheriff said. She recently submitted a DNA sample to authorities and the sample came back positive this past Thursday night, he said.

Mobley’s biological mother, father, grandmother and a couple of close family friends have been notified and they are extremely excited, the sheriff said.

Craig Aiken, Mobley’s biological father, told ABC News Friday he has spoken with Mobley over the phone and on Skype, along with her biological mother.

“It was like the end of a nightmare,” Aiken said. “I can’t even explain it.”

Aiken said that he and Mobley’s biological mother would celebrate her birthday every year and would imagine “how it would be if she were here” and “what we would do if she came came back.”

He added that he expects Mobley to visit her place of birth very soon and that the they would take it “day by day” to slowly “transition back to a happy family.”

Mobley’s biological grandmother, Velma Aiken, told ABC News that the family cried “tears of joy” when they were informed by police that her granddaughter had been found. Velma Aiken said it felt like they had known each other all along.

Although she was “bitter and empty” toward Williams for “stealing” her “grandbaby,” Velma Aiken said she is grateful that Williams was “willing to raise her right.”

Williams was charged with kidnapping at a bond hearing on Friday in South Carolina. Bail was denied and another bond hearing will be held once she is extradited to Jacksonville, Florida, according to the sheriff’s office.

Mobley, who identified herself as “Alexis” in court, began to cry when her mother was denied bond. She told Williams that she is “praying for her.”

“Mama, I love you,” she said.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Bush Daughters Pen Letter of Advice to Malia, Sasha Obama on Life After the White House

Posted/updated on: January 13, 2017 at 4:43 pm

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Bush, no strangers to life after the White House, have told Malia and Sasha Obama that after Inauguration Day on Jan. 20, they will, “Be writing the story of your lives, beyond the shadow of your famous parents.”

The very personal advice from the twin daughters of President George W. Bush was written to the daughters of President Obama in an open letter published in full by Time magazine.

Bush Hager and Bush, 35, shared the letter just days before the Obama daughters will join what Bush and Hager call the “rarified club” of former First Children, describing it as a club with membership that Malia and Sasha didn’t seek and “one with no guidelines.”

“But you have so much to look forward to,” they wrote, also telling the Obamas, “you will always carry with you the experiences of the past eight years.”

Malia and Sasha, now 18 and 15, respectively, were also welcomed to the White House in 2009 by the Bush twins, both with a personal tour and a letter.

The 2009 letter from the then 27-year-old Bush twins gave the then 10-year-old Malia and 7-year-old Sasha advice like finding loyal friends, sliding down the banister of the White House solarium for fun and taking part in every White House engagement and trip they could.

Their current letter to Malia and Sasha reflects on all the sisters had done during the eight years of their dad’s presidency, from standing with President Obama at the gates of the cell where Nelson Mandela was once imprisoned, to hiking in national parks, and traveling to Liberia and Morocco with their mom, First Lady Michelle Obama.

“We have watched you grow from girls to impressive young women with grace and ease,” Bush Hager and Bush wrote.

When Obama leaves office on Jan. 20, Malia will continue her gap year before attending Harvard University in the fall. Sasha will remain with her parents in Washington, D.C., to finish high school.

“Enjoy college. As most of the world knows, we did,” the Bush twins wrote, acknowledging the occasional news they made as undergrads during their dad’s administration. “And you won’t have the weight of the world on your young shoulders anymore. Explore your passions. Learn who you are. Make mistakes —- you are allowed to.”

Bush Hager, now a correspondent on NBC’s TODAY show, and Bush, co-founder and the CEO of Global Health Corps, ended the letter with a reminder of the bond they share with the Obama girls.

“You stood by as your precious parents were reduced to headlines. Your parents, who put you first and who not only showed you but gave you the world,” they wrote. “As always, they will be rooting for you as you begin your next chapter. And so will we.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Scoreboard Roundup — 1/12/17

Posted/updated on: January 13, 2017 at 8:09 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Here are the latest scores and winners:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Denver 140, Indiana 112
New Orleans 104, Brooklyn 95
NY Knicks 104, Chicago 89
San Antonio 134, LA Lakers 94
Dallas 113, Phoenix 108
Golden State 127, Detroit 107

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Philadelphia 5, Vancouver 4 (SO)
Tampa Bay 4, Buffalo 2
Ottawa 4, Pittsburgh 1
Nashville 2, Boston 1
Minnesota 7, Montreal 1
Dallas 5, Detroit 2
Anaheim 4, Colorado 1
Edmonton 3, New Jersey 2 (OT)
LA Kings  5, St. Louis 1

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL

(4) UCLA 104, Colorado 89
(5) Gonzaga 93, Loyola Marymount 55
(16) Arizona 91, Arizona St. 75
Iowa 83, (17) Purdue 78
(18) Wisconsin 89, Ohio St. 66
(20) Notre Dame 67, Miami 62
(21) Saint Mary’s (Cal) 74, Portland 33
(22) Cincinnati 66, SMU 64
Utah 86, (25) Southern Cal 64

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Authorities Investigate Video Showing Dog Chained to Moving Trailer

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 11:28 pm

Thinkstock/iStock(FLAGLER COUNTY, Fla.) — Authorities in Florida have launched an investigation after a video emerged on Facebook of a dog chained to the top of a crate being towed by an SUV driving at least 70 mph.

Palm Coast resident Brenna Cronin, 24, shot the video Wednesday afternoon in Flagler County as she and her boyfriend were driving southbound on I-95 toward Daytona Beach. In the video, a dog is seen standing on top of the crate, which contained at least one other animal, while a Chevrolet Tahoe pulls the trailer at high speeds.

Cronin said she and her boyfriend were shocked to see the dog traveling in that manner, so she pulled out her video and began to film it.

“I was just completely outraged and appalled,” she told ABC News Thursday. “I couldn’t believe it.”

Once the driver realized Cronin was filming him, he “gave me the finger,” she said. Cronin said she is “happy” that the video she took led to an investigation of the owner.

“The dog stood up and was looking at me so sad,” she said. “I had to do something.”

As of Thursday afternoon, the Facebook video had been viewed more than 500,000 times, with hundreds of people expressing outrage over the dog’s condition in comments.

The owner, who did not wish to be identified, told ABC Jacksonville affiliate WTLV-TV that it was an “OK” way to transport dogs and that it is “how everybody transports.”

Flagler Animal Services is investigating the video, said Jeffery Ritter, development coordinator for the Flagler Humane Society. The dog seen in the video is a Blue American Pitbull Terrier named Zeus, who does not like to ride in the crate, Ritter said. So his owner, who said he uses the dog for hunting, allows him to ride outside, Ritter said.

A Flagler County ordinance allows people to travel with a dog in that manner as long as the animal is tethered twice to the vehicle. Dogs being transported in the open bed of pickup trucks or any other type of open vehicle must either be confined to a pen or be restrained by a “minimum of two tethers or some other similar method to safely control or restrain the dogs from easily escaping the vehicles,” No. 93-15 S 4, 11-15-93 of the Flagler County Code of Ordinances states.

Zeus was only tethered to the trailer once, Ritter said.

“The driver didn’t have any bad intentions,” he said. “…He honestly didn’t know any better.”

Zeus’ owner is cooperating with the investigation and has agreed to allow animal services to conduct wellness checks, Ritter said.

Once the Humane Society wraps up the investigation, it will turn over its findings to the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office, which will determine if a crime was committed, Flagler Police Chief Mark Strobridge told ABC News. At minimum, Zeus’ owner faces a ticket and fine under the Flagler County Ordinance, Ritter said.

Although it is legal in Flagler County to travel with a dog in an open vehicle, Ritter said the Humane Society “would not recommend it at all” and stressed the “importance of having any pet secured when driving.”

“Don’t let your dog sit in your lap when driving,” he warned pet owners. “Make sure your animal is contained while you travel. It’s dangerous for them as well as you and other drivers.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

8-Year-Old Battling Cancer Gets Wish to See Amazon Shipping Facility

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 3:47 pm

Thinkstock/Ryan McVay(PHOENIX) — An 8-year-old boy’s birthday wish to see an Amazon distribution center has been fulfilled.

Ben Bicknese loves shopping on the e-commerce site so much that he wanted to see where all the magic happens.

“He was just floored,” Ben’s mom Cecilia Bicknese of Tucson, Arizona, told ABC News. “There’s some pictures of his eyes popping out of his head. He was just stunned … he couldn’t believe he was there.”

Ben was diagnosed with Wilms tumor, a type of kidney cancer, in 2014 and had removal surgery that same year. The cancer returned in 2015, and he’s gone through chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Because of Ben’s low immune system, doctors advised against him leaving the house. That’s when his grandparents bought him an iPad to keep him occupied.

“He was online all the time, so he’d shop and figured out what two-day shipping was with Amazon,” Bicknese said of her son. “Then he found the same-day shipping and that blew his mind. He was just obsessed with it. He loves getting packages. He’s just like me.”

Ben became intrigued as to how Amazon handles its customers’ requests and asked his family if he could see one of its fulfillment centers someday.

Bicknese said she reached out to a friend who knew an employee of the company. Amazon then invited the family to its shipping facility in Phoenix on Tuesday — just one day after Ben’s 8th birthday.

“We were incredibly touched by Ben’s story and we were honored to host him, his family and care network at one of our Amazon fulfillment centers in Phoenix for a special behind-the-scenes tour,” a representative of Amazon said in a statement to ABC News. “From his scavenger hunt picking birthday presents to learning how to use the tape machine, we had just as much fun as Ben did — maybe even more! … Ben is definitely an honorary Amazonian and we wish him all the best.”

Amazon also donated 50 Kindle e-readers, Fire tablet devices and $2,500 in content gift cards to Banner Medical Center, where Ben received his treatment in Tucson.

“It was a blessing,” Bicknese said. “It was a really good day for him after a lot of bad days.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Four Charged in Paris Kardashian Robbery

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 3:47 pm

Timothy White/E!(PARIS) — Four people have been charged in France in the connection with alleged robbery of Kim Kardashian West, according to the Paris prosecutor’s office.

A 27-year-old faces charges of complicity with an armed robbery by an organized gang, sequestration and association with criminals, as do a 62-year-old and 63-year-old, authorities said.

Another suspect, 44, has been charged with concealment/fencing by an organized gang and association with criminals.

Six others are still being questioned, authorities said.

Last October, Kardashian West, 35, was allegedly robbed at gunpoint in a Paris apartment she had rented for Fashion Week. The assailants, whom the reality TV star’s publicist described as “armed, masked men dressed as police officers,” allegedly tied up Kardashian West and stole jewelry worth an estimated $10 million.

The French newspaper Le Monde first reported, and Us Weekly has confirmed, a report claiming that one of the 17 suspects arrested in connection with the Oct. 3, 2016 robbery works for the limo company that the Kardashian-Jenner family regularly used during their trips to the French capital.

According to Le Monde, the chauffeur was the last person to drive Kardashian West before the robbery, during which she was bound and held at gunpoint by five masked assailants who made off with an estimated $10 million worth of jewelry. Police are reportedly trying to determine whether the driver passed information to the thieves.

A representative for Kardashian West had no comment on the charges or arrests when reached by ABC News Thursday.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

DOJ Watchdog Launches Investigation into FBI’s Pre-Election Actions

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 2:47 pm

FBI(WASHINGTON) — Department of Justice Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz announced Thursday that his office will launch a review of the actions taken by the FBI and DOJ ahead of November’s election.

The inspector general will look at whether FBI Director James Comey’s press conference and notifications to Congress days prior to the election concerning the Hillary Clinton email probe were appropriate under DOJ guidelines.

The investigation is in response to “numerous” requests from members of congressional oversight committees, various organizations and the public, according to Horowitz.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Two Women Share How They Collectively Lost 100s of Pounds

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 10:05 am

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Two women who each lost over one hundred pounds shared their secrets and tips for how they were able to shed the weight Thursday on Good Morning America and in People magazine’s “Half Their Size” issue.

“These women have an incredible mindset,” Catherine Kast, staff editor at People magazine said Thursday. “They have developed methods to help them keep [the weight] off.”

Joanne Raymond, 49, a mother of two from Pennsylvania, said that she lost a total of 133 pounds, after going from 249 pounds to her current weight of 116 pounds.

“As I approached 50,” Raymond said, “Looking in the mirror … I was shocked at the belly that I now had, and no clothes fit. … I’ve gained and lost hundreds of pounds and each time I gained it back.”

Raymond said she turned to fitness apps, looking for something that would help her “stay on track.”

“I weigh myself every day,” Raymond added. “When my weight goes up a little bit, I moderate my diet. I’ve been there two other times and I’m not going back. Whatever the number is, I’m not upset by it and I don’t fixate on it. Instead, I use it to empower me to make good choices.”

She said she plans out her meals the night before and relies on an app called MyFitnessPal to track her meals and strictly eats only three meals a day with no snacking in between.

“No snacking at all,” Raymond said. “I used to graze pretty much all day long. It’s about telling myself: ‘You get to eat three times a day. That’s it.'”

Lindita Halimi, 27, an aspiring entertainer from Kosovo in Eastern Europe, lost a total of 130 pounds; dropping from 250 pounds to 120 pounds. She also kept the weight off for four years and can now squat 355 pounds.

Halimi said her poor eating habits began when she was growing up in war-torn Kosovo, where she didn’t know when she would be able to get her next meal.

“We were refugees,” Halimi said. “We boiled leaves, and we ate that just to survive.

“After we all got back home,” Halimi added, “I had this mentality of, ‘Let me eat now ’cause I don’t know when I’m going to eat later.'”

Halimi said she reached her heaviest weight of 250 pounds in her late teens, following years of overeating. She says she hit rock-bottom after she won an Albanian singing competition in 2009.

“Every magazine I was opening, every page I was turning to, there was something about … my weight,” Halimi said, “and all the criticism started to affect me.

“I knew I had to make a change,” she continued. She began her weight-loss journey, crediting working out with transforming her health.

“I drastically changed my diet and started walking since I couldn’t run or jog, but it wasn’t until I started lifting weights that I really lost the weight,” Halimi said. “I like weights because they pump you. They give you energy.”

Both women share their full stories in People magazine’s “Half Their Size,” issue, which is currently on newsstands nationwide.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Prince William Consoles Grieving Girl: ‘I Lost My Mummy’ Too

Posted/updated on: January 12, 2017 at 6:38 am

Matt Dunham – WPA Pool/ Getty Images(LONDON) — Prince William, who rarely speaks about his mother Princess Diana’s death, comforted a young girl who was mourning the loss of her father at a charity event in Stratford, London Wednesday.

“Do you know what happened to me?” William told 9-year old Aoife, who lost her father to pancreatic cancer six years ago. “You know I lost my mummy when I was very young too. I was [15] and my brother was 12. So we lost our mummy when we were young as well.

“Do you speak about your daddy?” William asked the girl. “It’s very important to talk about it. Very, very important.”

William is royal patron of the Child Bereavement U.K. Centre, a charity that helps families deal with the loss of a loved one.

Aoife’s mother, Marie, spoke to journalists after the event and said the conversation almost brought her to tears.

“I couldn’t believe it when he started to talk about his mother. It was very emotional and I was willing myself not to start to cry. I almost did,” she said.

William and Kate met with children at the facility in Stratford Wednesday and encouraged them to create memory jars to help them deal with their grief.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry have made mental health awareness a key focus of their charitable activities this past year and are encouraging children to open up and ask for help if they’re suffering. The royal trio has been praised for their work on mental health and their ability to empathize with young people struggling with life’s challenges.

William admitted to the children he was very angry about his own mother’s death.

“He told us how he felt angry when she died. He very specifically used that word anger, he felt angry about it,” another mother named Lorna said of William’s interaction with the children. “He also told us how important it was to talk about how we feel when we lose someone as he found it very difficult to talk about it.”

“I am telling my children that if they take anything away from this day, it is what he said about how important it is to talk. Kids do not forget that. Sometimes it hurts but we can remember the happy things too. It is so important to talk.”

One of Princess Diana’s closest friends, Julia Samuel, founded the charity in 1994 with Diana’s support. William took over as royal patron of the charity in 2009. William and Kate named Samuel one of Prince George’s godmothers.

William and Harry are commemorating the 20th anniversary of the late Princess Diana’s death later this summer.

The Duchess of Cambridge accompanied William to the engagement in a royal blue coat dress by the designer Eponine.

Earlier in the day, Kate attended her first engagement of the new year. The young mother stopped by the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families’ early years parenting unit and met with young mothers who have had to overcome family life battling addiction and abuse.

Kate encouraged the women, conceding “parenting is tough” no matter who you are or the circumstances you encounter while raising children.

Kate also visited with young mothers of children struggling with personality disorders and mental health challenges and commended them for their work.

“And with the history and all the things and the experiences you’ve all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties, and the lack of support you also received as mothers,” Kate said. “I find it extraordinary how you’ve managed actually. So really well done.”

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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