Paul and Daniel Pose with Tennis Trophy

Paul and Daniel didn't mind my 2nd place trophy following the Washington Kastles Charity Classic-

RIP Louis Zamperini: A True American Hero

Louis "Louie" Zamperini was a remarkable man who accomplished more in his lifetime than most people ever dream of.

Zamperini was born in Olean, New York on January 26, 1917.  The son of Italian immigrants, Louie and his family spoke very little English. They moved to California when he was just two years old and a young Louie was often the target of bullies.

Louie's older brother introduced him to the school track team where he went on to set world records, earn a scholarship to the University of Southern California, and eventually qualified for the U.S. Olympic team. At 19 he was the youngest American qualifier in the 5,000 meter race and went on to finish 8th at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany.

In 1941, Zamperini enlisted in the Army and was deployed to the Pacific as a bombardier. In 1943, Zamperini's plane was damaged in combat and the crew was assigned another B-24 plane.

During a search mission for lost aircraft and crewmen, Zamperini's plane crashed due to 'mechanical difficulties.' Three men survived the crash-- Zamperini among them--and they were forced to subsist on rainwater, raw fish and birds.

After thirty-three days at sea Sgt. Francis McNamara died--fourteen days later Zamperini and pilot/Lt. Russell "Phil" Phillips reached land and were captured by the Japanese Navy. The Army declared the men missing, and a year later they were listed as being killed in action. 

Zamperini was taken to a POW camp where he was beaten and held in captivity until the war ended. He returned home to a hero's welcome in 1945. 

Post-war, Zamperini married Cynthia Applewhite, who died in 2001. He became a born-again Christian and was close with Rev. Bill Graham, who helped him go on to become a motivational speaker. Zamperini believed in forgiveness, and later visited with many of the prison guards he met during his time as a POW to tell them he had forgiven them.

Zamperini's incredible story inspired best-selling author Laura Hillenbrand (author of Seabiscuit: An American Legend) to write about it in her book, Unbroken.

Actress Angelina Jolie produced and directed a movie based on Hillenbrand's book that is scheduled to be released on Christmas Day in 2014 by Universal Pictures. An unlikely friendship between the award winning actress and the American hero quickly developed and Zamperini said he knew Jolie would tell his story "in the right way." 

"It is a loss impossible to describe," Jolie said in a statement about Zamperini's death. "We will miss him terribly."

RIP Louis Zamperini--a true American hero, and a man who never let life break him.

Pictured: Bret Baier, Brit Hume, Louis "Louie" Zamperini, and James Rosen at Fox News--

Bret Baier opens up to Megyn Kelly about his new book

Tommy Vietor tells Bret "Dude, it (Benghazi) was like two years ago..."

Former Obama National Security Spokesman Tommy Vietor joined Bret live on set for Special Report  and when asked about whether he changed the word attacks to demonstrations in the Susan Rice talking points, Vietor said he did not remember because-- "Dude, this was like two years ago.."

Watch the exchange and share your thoughts with us here or via Twitter @BretBaier--

 

Children's Ball Raises $10.8 Million

By: Katy Ricalde

The Children's Ball benefiting Children's National Medical Center took place in Washington, DC over the weekend and the evening could not have been any more of a success. Bret and Amy Baier and UAE Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba and his wife Abeer co-chaired the event that raised an impressive $10.8 million dollars for the hospital-- the most money ever raised at a single charity event in the nation's capital. 

Both couples have very personal stories-- Paul Baier has undergone three open heart surgeries, seven angioplasties and a stomach surgery (as well as countless other procedures) all at CNMC. The Al Otaiba's daughter was also treated at Children's for a rare lung condition. 

The evening kicked off with a special video featuring celebrities and lawmakers from across both sides of the aisle. Former President Bush, First Lady Michelle Obama, and former First Lady/Senator/Secretary of State Hillary Clinton all left messages for ball-goers. As the video played guests enjoyed food prepared by celebrity chefs Wolfgang Puck and Nobu Matsuhisa. 

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor was presented with the Children's Advocacy Award by Children's National president and CEO Dr. Kurt Newman. 

A silent auction featured items including a black lab puppy, luxurious trips and sports packages, and jewelry designed by jeweler to the stars Lorraine Schwartz and a very special patient from Children's National Medical Center.

The event concluded with a surprise performance from Grammy and Oscar winner Jennifer Hudson. Hudson volunteered her time to help raise money for the hospital.

Ball co-chairs Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba, Abeer Al Otaiba, and Amy and Bret Baier.

Wolfgang Puck and Nobu in the kitchen while dinner was being prepared.

Bret Baier with a popular auction item, a black lab puppy.

A former Children's patient helped design earrings and a bracelet with designer Lorraine Schwartz. Beyonce Knowles wore the items during an event and they went at auction for $75,000. The man who won the jewelry surprised Jozlyn at the end of the auction by giving her the earrings and bracelet to keep. As you can see by the photos--she was more than a little surprised!

Dr. Kurt Newman, president and CEO of Children's National, presents Majority Leader Eric Cantor with the Children's Advocacy Award. 

Academy Award- and Grammy-winning recording artist Jennifer Hudson concluded the program with a 30-minute concert. 

Future Green Jacket Winners??

Our little golfers getting ready for the 2014 Masters-- Nice swing! 

 

Preview: Bret Interviews Outgoing NSA Director General Keith Alexander

BAIER: Former President Jimmy Carter saying he writes letters instead of sending e-mails because he's worried that you're listen -- you're reading his e-mails.

ALEXANDER:  Well, we're not.  So he can now go back to writing e-mails.  The reality is, we don't do that.  And if we did, it would be illegal and we'd be found, uh, I think accoun -- held accountable and responsible.  Look at all the folks that have looked at what we're doing, from the president's review group to Congress to the courts to the DNI, DOD, Justice.  Everybody reviews what we do to see if anybody is doing anything illegal like you suggest.  No one has found anything, zero, except for in 12 cases where people did that and we had already reported those.

 

Facebook Q&A

 

We invite you to join us today for a live Q&A with Bret over on our Facebook page. Bret will be taking your questions on a variety of topics, including politics, and a topic that is very close to the Baier family-- congenital heart defect awareness. 

Tips for the Q&A:

--We will open the Q&A feature on our Facebook page at 3pmET at facebook.com/bretbaiersr. 

--Bret will respond to questions for 30 minutes and will answer as many as he can.

--Please do not post the same question over and over again.

--You may need to refresh your browser to see the questions/answers.

--The topics we are focusing on include news of the day, politics, and congenital heart defect awareness/Bret's son Paul, but you can ask other questions on other topics.

--Have fun with it! Bret is looking forward to the chat and we appreciate your participation!

Bret will also discuss his new book, Special Heart: A Journey of Faith, Hope, Courage and Love, out June 3rd and available for pre-order over on Amazon.com. One hundred percent of what Bret receives from the sale of the book will be donated to various non-profit pediatric heart causes.

Twitter Q&A with Bret and the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am!

Check out the website and follow Bret's week at the tournament here: http://www.attpbgolf.com/players

Amy Baier & Abeer Al Otaiba: The bonds of friendship

I am so proud of my wife and our dear family friend.. they have bonded over something no parent ever wants to have to go through, but they have always been there for each other and remain close friends.

We are looking forward to the Children's Ball for Children's National Medical Center in a few short months!

Check out the article below from Washingtonian Magazine:

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On The Show

An interview with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as well as Mustafa Barghouti, of the Palestinian National Initiative Party.

All-Star Panel

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  • Ron Fournier @ron_fournier
  • Charles Krauthammer @krauthammer

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