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CNN Larry King Live
Young Man Brutally Murdered in Caribbean Paradise; Police Find What Could be Bloodstains in Portugal Apartment Where 4-Year-Old Madeleine McCann Vanished
Aired August 08, 2007 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RICK SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Drilling down to the miners is more than halfway to the men at this point. Amazing man. When a character. We'll be following his story and if there's any break on the story we'll bring it to you right away.
I'm Rick Sanchez. Thanks so much for being with us today.
LARRY KING LIVE starts right now.
LARRY KING, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, police find what could be bloodstains in the Portugal apartment where beautiful 4-year-old Madeleine McCann vanished three months ago. What took them so long after her disappearance made national headlines?
Meanwhile after a possible Madeleine sighting in Belgium, the trail runs cold. We've got the latest on this desperate search.
Plus, their son brutally murdered in a Caribbean paradise. His heartbroken parents tell us why they are furious at how police in the U.S. Virgin Islands have handled the case.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Look out. Airborne. He's upside down.
KING: Cheating death and coming back for more. Ashley Judd's husband, Indy 500 champ, Dario Franchitti, somehow walked away from this.
Professional skateboarder Jake Brown managed to get up after this bone-crushing 45-foot freefall.
And drag racing champ Tony Schumacher was back behind the wheel three weeks after this 300-mile-an-hour crash.
ANNOUNCER: How do they survive? They'll tell us next on LARRY KING LIVE.
KING: We begin with a really tragic story, the stabbing to death of a young man, Jamie Cockayne, on St. John Island back in the Virgin Islands back on June 19. To discuss it on the phone are Jamie's parents, Jeanie and Bill Cockayne, in Philadelphia is Tara Broad, a girlfriend of Jamie's, in Harrisburg is Sean Summers, the attorney for the Cockayne family and in New York is Randi Kaye, CNN correspondent, who has been reporting on the investigation into the killing of Jamie Cockayne.
Randi, will you give us the overview here?
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, what we know Larry is that Jamie was killed back on June 19. He was on the island of St. John with his mother. She was looking for a retirement home and he was waiting to get his working papers because he had taken a job at a sailing club, at a yacht club, on a neighboring island. And we went out alone, I guess he had become lonely over the weeks and a little bored. So he went out alone one night to a bar on St. John and got into it apparently, according to witnesses, with two other men in the bar. His mother admits he was drunk. He left the bar. These two men, apparently, according to witnesses, followed him up the street and witnesses say that they brutally beat him with a two by four and stabbed him seven times and he died that night in that street.
KING: And Jeanie, you're on the phone with us. You were there at the time, right?
JEANIE COCKAYNE: Yes, I was Larry.
KING: And Bill, you were not, right?
BILL COCKAYNE: No I was not. I was in California when I got the call from my wife that said Jamie was murdered.
KING: All right. Jeanie this, seems like a horrific incident and terrible to contemplate but your anger at the authorities is based on what?
COCKAYNE: Well, our anger is that they didn't make an arrest until six weeks after Jamie was murdered and they have only made one arrest and there's more than one suspect in the case and our private investigation proves that they knew the names and who these people were probably no later than three days after the murder.
KING: Well, Sean Summers, you're the attorney for the family. Why would authorities be lax? If they have a killing and they know who the suspects are, why not arrest?
SEAN SUMMERS, COCKAYNE FAMILY ATTORNEY: That is a good question, Larry. Our investigators discovered they knew who the perpetrators were within three or four days after the murder. They did not make an arrest until we finally forced a meeting with the government officials last Friday. We left the government building at approximately 3:45. On the way into the building, there was a CNN camera crew and on the way out of the building will was a CNN camera crew, and when the media got the attention for the murder then the authorities arrested someone at 9:30 that night, ironically, a few hours after we left that meeting.
KING: Randi, have you talked to the authorities to find out why they were lax?
KAYE: I did, Larry. I pressed the police commissioner there, James McCall. He is a former ATF guy, tough guy. He was brought in to actually bring up some of the crime on the islands there and I pressed him. I said why did you wait more than six weeks and only arrest one of the people who was mentioned in the police affidavit which we've been able to obtain? He said it's about more than just the arrest. It's about the prosecution. It's about gathering all the evidence, that it goes beyond the arrest. They want to make sure that they have all their ducks in a row, and he says his priority is justice for Jamie, and if it means waiting, he's going to have to wait.
KING: Bill, do you accept that?
COCKAYNE: It seems that the private investigative information that we had showed probable cause, you know, beyond a reasonable doubt in order to have an arrest made. It's really unsafe for the folks of St. John in the Virgin Islands to have potential murderers walking around on the street. And particularly, you know in a high tourism area.
KING: That's a very, very popular island.
Tara, tell us about Jamie. What kind of kid was he?
TARA BROAD: Well, he was the type of guy that everybody just wanted to be with. He was free-spirited but at the same time he was a really gentle guy. He was just great to be around, and he always had something to offer and something to show people about the world that, you know, people didn't know before, so.
KING: Jeanie, how could he get into this kind of trouble?
COCKAYNE: How could he get into that kind of trouble?
KING: Getting drunk and that kind of scene.
COCKAYNE: Well, Jamie turned 21 on May 20th and he was murdered a month later, or 21, did I say 20? Anyway, he was murdered a month later, and I don't think it's that odd to imagine a boy that just turned 21 down in St. John on vacation having too much to drink.
KING: You're right. Are you planning any action, Sean?
SUMMERS: As far as civil actions, Larry? No. At this point in time we're just concentrating on putting as much pressure as necessary on the local authorities so that they arrest the second perpetrator and convict both perpetrators of this horrific crime.
KING: We're going to take a break and come back.
And thanks very much, Randi, for your reporting.
We'll hold everybody else and we'll be adding some people as well. Don't go away.
KAYE: Jamie Cockayne had a passion for sailing. He landed a job at a yacht club in the Caribbean. So in May, the 21-year-old from Pennsylvania, came to the island of St. John to wait for working papers. Jamie had been out drinking here the night before. According to this police affidavit obtained by CNN, he and two other men started arguing. They followed Jamie up the street. Minutes later he was dead.
KAYE: From day one the family says police have botched the investigation. They claim the murder scene was hosed down before forensic investigators arrived and that police threw out Jamie's baseball hat simply because they had run out of evidence bags.
COMM. JAMES MCCALL, VIRGIN ISLANDS POLICE DEPT.: This investigation has not been botched.
KAYE: Was that crime scene hosed down?
MCCALL: As a course of duty whenever a scene has been completed, of course, the scene is washed away or the blood or whatever is there?
KAYE: So the evidence wasn't washed away?
MCCALL: No, we collected the evidence.
KING: Remaining with us on the phone Jeanie and Bill Cockayne, their 21-year-old son Jamie stabbed to death on St. John on June 19.
Also remaining with us, Tara Broad, the girlfriend of Jamie. She is in Philadelphia. In Harrisburg is Sean Summers, the attorney for the Cockayne family.
On the phone is Shaun Pennington, publisher of "The Virgin Island Source." They have been covering the Cockayne story and a San Francisco defense attorney, Michael Cardoza, and in Miami is Florida Assistant State Attorney, Stacey Honowitz, who specializes in sex crimes and child abuse.
First to Shaun Pennington, what's your theory on all of this with regard to the aspect of the Virgin Island's journalist, Shaun?
SHAUN PENNINGTON, PUBLISHER, VIRGIN ISLANDS SOURCE: Well, good evening, everyone.
PENNINGTON: First and I've said this directly to the Cockaynes, this community and for myself as well, we any time that there are any murders in the Virgin Islands it effects every one of us. We're a very small community, and our deepest sorrow goes out to the family, and they have a huge family, and I've been hearing from the family, cousins and friends of Jamie from day one because we are an internet newspaper, and we were the first ones to get the word out about it.
KING: What's your theory?
PENNINGTON: My theory in terms of?
KING: The case.
PENNINGTON: Well, there have been arrests made. There have been two arrests made, one suspect that's been charged with first degree murder, and another one with witness tampering. I believe that from interviews with the police commissioner and other government officials that what's been done is consistent with what our new police commissioner has said even before he was the commissioner, that they have called in from what we've been told all of the outside agencies that were available, including the FBI.
KING: I mean what we're establishing here Shaun Pennington is from your journalistic experience and your coverage of this, they have done as what they should have done.
PENNINGTON: As far as we know, yes.
KING: Jeanie does that satisfy you?
COCKAYNE: No, it does not satisfy me.
COCKAYNE: Well, I can give you a perfect example. The car that was used in the murder, the getaway car, was sighted by an eyewitness a few days after the murder and she called the St. John police station and she gave them the location of the car and asked them if they could go down and get the license plate because she was uncomfortable doing it herself, and they told her they didn't have time or they didn't have the staff to do that. A few days later she saw the car again, and she went down and she got the license plate herself, putting herself in jeopardy, called the police station and gave them the license plate number and the location of the car again. That was probably five weeks ago. The car still hasn't been picked up. The man that stabbed my son to death got in that car. There could be crucial blood evidence in that car, and we have asked and asked and asked repeatedly why won't you pick up the car.
KING: And what do they tell you?
COCKAYNE: They tell me they can't tell me anything because it's an ongoing investigation.
KING: Stacey, with your experience as a state attorney looking, of course, at a foreign country, how does this appear to you?
STACEY HONOWITZ, FLORIDA ASST. STATE ATTY.: Well, I think anybody listening to this probably remembers, goes back to the Natalie Holloway days, I mean this was the same gripe that Natalie Holloway's parents had of not getting information. No one wants to talk to me. It's an ongoing investigation and we need help and that's what it sounds like here now. Now, there have been arrests made. There are two people in custody. I think one of the gentleman bonded out, the witness tamper bonded out but certainly the parents that are involved in this case are never going to think, and rightly so, that enough is being done, and it's not being quick enough, so when this case, thank god two people are in custody, and if work still needs to be done there's nothing wrong with bringing in outside parties. It's nothing to be ashamed of. If you need help in the department, bring other people in. KING: Michael Cardoza, what's your view?
MICHAEL CARDOZA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I've got to tell you, Larry, this is certainly interesting. Remember, this is the U.S. Virgin Islands, so why are they so adverse to letting the feds come in and help them? The ego of police departments, the local police departments against federal governments absolutely astounds me.
I agree with Stacey. You need help, bring them in. The other thing they need to do is get closer with that family. When I prosecuted cases, one of the jobs was to not only do justice but give the appearance of doing justice, and you do that by bringing the family in and not telling them we can't tell you all about the case. Of course you can't, but give them what you can give them. Give them comfort, make them feel good. Make them feel as if you're progressing and you should be progressing.
Fine, they have arrested one person. Certainly they have to collect all the evidence to be sure they can convict in this case, but as I said in the beginning, just as Stacey, put your egos aside guys and let the feds come in and help where they know. Because you guys don't have as many murders down there and you're not as experienced as other departments and especially the federal government. Let them help.
KING: Sean Summers, do you think that's going to happen?
SUMMERS: The federal government coming in, Larry.
SUMMERS: No I don't think that's going to happen because we've been asking for that since day one. We've been in contact with law enforcement and with the FBI. We've been in contact with the U.S. Attorney's office, and we've received no indication that this was going to be turned over to the federal government.
We have, in fact, turned over our private investigator's report to Senator Specter and it's my understanding that he subsequently turned it over to the department of justice but having said that, we still believe at end of the day the federal government is not going to get involved. I have been told that they would get involved if they were asked to get involved by the governor.
KING: We're going to stay on top of this and not let go. Thank you all very much and our condolences to the Cockaynes.
When we come back, we're going to look at a missing child, missing overseas. No trace, maybe a blood trace. Next.
KING: We are approaching the 100-day mark in the heartbreaking story of Madeleine McCann. That's the little girl who vanished from her room in a Portuguese resort while her parents were at dinner nearby. Madeleine's disappearance has made headlines around the world and prompted an international effort to determine her fate.
Joining us in Praia Da Luz, Portugal is Robert Moore. He's an ITN correspondent, and he's been covering the story of this disappearance since the beginning. He's interviewed her parents. In San Francisco, Candice Delong, the former FBI profiler who served as the liaison to the bureau's behavioral science unit, member of the child abduction task force and in Pittsburgh our old friend Dr. Cyril Wecht, forensic pathologist and attorney, former coroner of Allegheny county.
Bring us up to date, Robert. What's the latest? There's been some blood spottings?
ROBERT MOORE, ITN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, yes, Larry, there have been blood -- some traces of blood found in the apartment behind me. Its investigative significance is not at all yet clear. That blood is being tested at a laboratory in Britain. Really we're just surrounded by this tidal wave of rumor and speculation. It's openly now said in the Portuguese papers according to anonymous unsubstantiated police sources that perhaps there was no abduction at all. Maybe there was a case here of Madeleine being killed in the apartment rather than kidnapped but this is very, very difficult for Jerry and Kate McCann to deal with because there are now these allegations, these suggestions, these accusations almost in the Portuguese Press, and they have no way of dealing with them. So it is a very, very unfortunate way to mark 100 days since Madeleine was abducted.
KING: Madeleine's parents, Jerry and Kate, have spoken out in response to the accusations and speculations in the Portuguese Press. Here's what they said.
JERRY MCCANN: We're not naive, but on numerous occasions the Portuguese police have assured us that they were looking for Madeleine alive and not, you know, Madeleine being murdered, and I don't know of any information that's changed that. Kate and I strongly believe that Madeleine was alive when she was taken from the apartment. Obviously what we don't know is what happened to her afterwards, who has taken her and we're desperate to find out.
KATE MCCANN: And we said even last week when we met with the police, they said we are looking for a living child and they have said that a lot.
KING: Candice Delong, is it logical for people to hint blame at the parents?
CANDICE DELONG, FORMER FBI PROFILER: Well, it's certainly not unusual, statistically, Larry. When children of tender years, such as Madeleine is, disappear or are murdered, around 75 percent of the time the person responsible for that is the parents. Now we don't know that she was murdered, but in answer to your question, no, it's not unusual.
KING: Dr. Wecht, OK we find possible blood specs after three months. How much forensic value could they have? DR. CYRIL WECHT, FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST AND ATTORNEY: Well, there's not going to be a temporal component here, Larry, and especially is that true in light of the fact that as I understand it many people have moved and lived into that -- lived in that apartment in the weeks that have transpired since the little girl went missing.
First of all, it's necessary to determine, and I'm sure they already have is it blood, is it human blood and then with DNA is it Madeleine's blood. If it is Madeleine's blood, I think it's extremely ominous because it doesn't fit the stories that have been told so far and you've got to wonder who in the world would have found it necessary to inflict a wound producing blood in a 4-year-old girl if she were simply to be abducted. I do not think that that would have been necessary, so we -- they know and we haven't been told yet, is it her blood, and if it is her blood, then I think it is a very, very dangerous kind of a situation to contemplate, and I would have much, much doubt about what is likely to transpire.
That should have been tested immediately. The room should have been examined forensically. The blood should have been identified, even the nature of the blood spatter to determine whether or not it was consistent with a blow having been inflicted producing let's say a scalp wound, for example, that would have produced this kind of blood splatter. This was really botched.
KING: KING: Robert Moore, what are the police saying?
MOORE: Well, officially the police are saying very little. They are very serious law on judicial secrecy in which he confirm almost none of the rumors. Jerry and Kate McCann were actually down at police station which is the headquarters for this investigation a few hours ago. It was an informal chat in which Jerry and Kate were asking for information, and I understand that the police provided very few answers.
Officially all the police are telling me is that all avenues, all options are still being considered, including the possibility she was abducted, including the possibility she may have been killed in the apartment. So the police are saying very little, and it's in that vacuum that we're hearing this kind of extraordinary number of rumors and this extraordinary volume of speculation that I think makes it even more traumatic, even more distressing for Kate and for Jerry.
KING: Candice, this is an if, if they find blood and if it's Madeleine's blood, what does that indicate to you?
DELONG: Well, if I was investigating this, of course, one of the things that would be important to me is in the course of interviewing the parents shortly after her disappearance, it happened way back in early May, it would have a bearing on the blood in the room had I been told then, and by the way, she was jumping up and down on the bed and she fell off the bed and she hit her head or she got a bloody nose or something like that, possibly some explanation as to why her blood might be in the room before her blood was found. Certainly doesn't mean that they -- I mean, obviously they could have been -- that could be in anticipation of being accused of something, but that would be a factor for me. If this, as you say, it's a big if, turns out to be Madeleine's blood and there's no good explanation for that, that would intensify suspicion of the parents.
KING: Are you pessimistic about finding this child, Dr. Wecht?
WECHT: Yes, Larry, we all know with each passing day the likelihood of recovering a perceived victim and especially a young child four years of age decreases and with the passage of 100 days and all the police investigation that has transpired at the international level beyond the borders of Portugal and especially in light of this new evidence, if it turns out to be Madeleine's blood, you know, there's no -- to be realistic, one cannot be the least bit optimistic about finding this child alive.
KING: Thank you all very much. As with the earlier case, we'll stay atop this one.
Coming up in our second half hour, three guys who defied death for a living and wait until you see what they nearly missed. Stay tuned.
LARRY KING, HOST: Welcome back. Any professional race car driver who gets behind the wheel knows that there's no guarantee that he or she will make it to the checkered flag. Our guest this segment, Indy 500 winner Dario Franchitti learned that lesson recently on a Michigan track. Watch what happened.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And here comes -- oh, look out, airborne, Franchitti is upside down!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: That was Dario Franchitti crashing in the Firestone Indy 400 at Michigan. When did that happen, Dario?
DARIO FRANCHITTI, PROFESSIONAL RACE CAR DRIVER: That was on Sunday afternoon, Larry.
KING: Just two days ago?
FRANCHITTI: Yes, sir.
KING: How are you living?
FRANCHITTI: Some luck, for sure, but a lot of -- a lot of time and effort has gone into making, you know, Indy cars and all type of race cars safer throughout the years. And I definitely, I think, owe my life to the people that have done and made those advances and as I say, a bit of luck as well because somebody was definitely looking out for me there.
KING: So you had no injuries from that crash? FRANCHITTI: I have a little bit of bruising right about here on the nose. That's about it. I was actually in the gym on Monday morning. I felt no ill effects at all. I really can't believe it.
KING: Dario, by the way, is married to Ashley Judd. He won the Indianapolis 500 in May. By the way, what caused this accident?
FRANCHITTI: This accident, I think, was caused by, in my opinion, the car next to me moving up the track into the back of my car. I think it was a misjudgment by Dan Weldon who was driving the other car. I don't believe he did it on purpose, far from it, but I just believe it was a slight misjudgment there, and that was the result. The regulations have something to do with it as well. The regulations that we run on the Indy cars and those types of tracks mean that we run very, very closely together with zero margin for error. And we saw the result there. So I think that was probably the reason, Larry.
KING: How fast were you going?
FRANCHITTI: About 250 miles an hour at that point probably when the car took off.
KING: Why do you race cars, Dario?
FRANCHITTI: I do it because I love it. I've done it -- I've raced go carts since I was 10 years old. I've wanted to be a racing driver since I was four.
KING: Where did you grow up?
FRANCHITTI: I grew up in Scotland. And yes, I've always wanted to do it and you know I know that danger is a part of the sport. It's not a part of the sport I enjoy. I lost my best friend to an accident in the end of 1999. But you know I accept the risks and I love the job that I do.
KING: Who died?
FRANCHITTI: My friend Greg Muir. His name was -- really probably one of the best drivers I ever raced against and my best friend.
KING: Is that a sport that's teachable?
FRANCHITTI: There's a certain amount of -- you can teach people so much but there has to be some natural instinct involved. And you see people taking longer to learn something maybe but there's a certain amount of instinct but then you have to work at that instinct.
Jackie Stewart is always talking about mind management and making the mind work as well as it can for you. And although we travel at such tremendous speed, everything happens almost in slow motion. So in some ways it's akin to golf that you really have to get your mind working in right way as well as everything else.
KING: What's happening to your mind when the car is going up in the air like that? Are you thinking I bought it?
FRANCHITTI: You know the whole thing happens in slow motion. As soon as car kicked sideways, and this is the first time I've been upside down in a 24-year career, that was the first time, as soon as it kicked sideways I felt -- the first thought was this is not good.
KING: Good thinking.
FRANCHITTI: Good thinking, exactly. And then it went upside down. I opened my eyes again as it was upside down traveling backwards and at that point I felt OK, how bad is it going to be here. How bad is it going to hurt and what's going to break and how bad is the concussion going to be because I've had a few of those mostly, not driving Indy cars. And when I hit the ground the first time, I couldn't believe how small the impact was. And then when the car finally came to a rest, I was just amazed I was in one piece and pretty thankful for it.
KING: What does Ashley think of your profession?
FRANCHITTI: Ashley loves my profession. She loves coming to the races. She's a really big race fan. Since she's met me she's really come to love the sport. And I think it's more difficult for her a lot of the time and for my family, my mom, my dad, my sister, my brother, to watch sometimes than it is to do it. So it's tough to put people in that position sometimes but I love that sport and she is a great supporter as is my whole family.
KING: Did she see that accident Sunday?
FRANCHITTI: You know it worked out well. She was watching the race at home and she had gone outside to actually fill the bird feeder up. And she came back in and saw that I was getting out of the car which was in pieces. Then they showed the replay. So she got to see the replay knowing I was OK. So I'm really thankful for that.
KING: What kind of driver are you on Thursday afternoon?
FRANCHITTI: I try and take my time especially over here in the U.S. because, you know, the cops are really efficient over here in catching you for speeding. So I try and take it easy and not go too quickly because as you can see from the video I get enough fun out on the racetrack.
KING: Video of that crash is available on YouTube.com, and according to what we can check at least 250,000 people have tuned in to watch that. Why do you think we're fascinated with looking at crashes like that?
FRANCHITTI: I'm not sure what is in the human mind that enjoys it. I have to say I don't enjoy watching them. I've watched the replay. I watched it simply because I wanted to understand how the accident started. I don't enjoy watching my own accidents and I don't enjoy watching other people's either whatever the sport may be or even helicopter crashes or any of that stuff because, you know, I think I've been in so many myself that I know what it's like. KING: Was anybody else hurt?
FRANCHITTI: No. Everybody walked away. We were all actually in the medical center together. And, yes, everybody was fine.
FRANCHITTI: In fact, Sam Hornish, one of the guys involved who won the Indy 500 in 2006; he helped the safety team get my car back upright. So I've got to really thank him because that was a real class act.
KING: Our guest is Dario Franchitti. He'll remain with us. He won the Indy 500. When we come back, Dario and I will be joined by the daring young man whose skateboard stunt left him hanging in mid- air before dropping 45 feet without a net. More of the amazing feat that left him barefoot and flat on his back when we come back.
KING: In the world of extreme sports, you don't need a lot of horsepower to risk your neck all it takes is a skateboard and a couple of unbelievable jumps. Take a look at our next guest, Jake Brown, as he undertakes an unplanned 45-foot dive from the top of a ramp. This was last Thursday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Here's that 720 he nailed, the first ever lands in competition and then it goes horrible wrong for Jake Brown.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: We welcome Jake Brown. And Dario Franchitti remains with us. Dario, of course, won the Indy 500 and had that accident going 250 miles an hour in Michigan on Sunday. Jake had this last Thursday at the X Games here in Los Angeles.
You brought the shoes with you, right?
JAKE BROWN, PROFESSIONAL SKATEBOARDER: Yes. These are the shoes that flew off my feet.
KING: Now what happened? Well, all right, what happened, Jake?
BROWN: I landed a 720 over the gap. There's two different obstacles on this contest piece and a 720 is two rotations. It shows the footage right there. And then I'm coming up the quarter pipe and I'm off balance. I was trying to cut over to the right and then cut back to the left to give myself more room to move on the quarter pipe part where the accident happened. And I was off balance and the G- forces; everything else combined to make me squat to the board and then shoot me out to the flat, as you can see.
KING: Did you know you were trouble?
BROWN: Yes. By the time I got to the top of the ramp, I knew I was in big trouble.
KING: How badly were you hurt?
BROWN: I think there was a lot of adrenaline at first because I wasn't really that hurt right away. I felt like...
KING: What's your injuries now?
BROWN: I've got a fractured wrist, a fractured vertebrae and a bruised kidney -- I mean bruised liver and lung and just...
KING: How long have you been skateboarding?
BROWN: ...some crazy whiplash. About 20 years.
BROWN: It's great fun. I mean once I picked up a skateboard, it's all I ever wanted to do.
KING: Where are you from?
KING: Can you make money skateboarding?
BROWN: Yes, yes. That's what I do it to make money. So...
KING: I mean do you make it at events like at X Games, you make money?
BROWN: You make money from sponsors and then events and demonstrations and...
KING: You brought this hat. It says "Blind." Is that a company that makes skateboards?
KING: Yes. That's a skateboard company. I ride for them.
KING: Dario, what do you think of what Jake does?
FRANCHITTI: I couldn't actually watch the accident, Larry. I started to see it happening and I had to turn away. It's scary looking. I mean I have all that protection around about me and with the car and with the formal structures and there's Jake with his skateboard and, you know, not much else. So I think he's incredibly brave.
KING: Jake, what do you think of what Dario does?
BROWN: Well, he's going quite a bit faster than me. It's just we're in two different worlds, you know. And then I've got much respect for what he does as well.
KING: All right, when you're going up, what's the key to skateboarding? Do you do things that other guys don't do? I mean are there certain jumps that other guys don't do?
BROWN: A lot of people have different tricks, like signature tricks and stuff.
KING: What's yours?
BROWN: Basically for videos you film -- when you film a video about it, it usually takes about a year or so to film...
KING: To film a video?
KING: A year?
BROWN: And then it'll be like a two-minute segment for each rider or whatever. So you'll just be there, you know, five days a week filming, filming, filming until you get that two minutes at end of the year. And it's usually a bunch of tricks that haven't been done or just, you know, some unusual or enjoyable stuff like -- this is from a video, our last one, video, "What if?"
KING: Boy, that's pretty great stuff.
KING: How important is the board?
BROWN: The board is one of the main things. The board, the shoes, the wheels, it all comes into play. You want to feel comfortable with your entire setup.
KING: I asked Dario if you can teach his sport. Can you teach yours?
BROWN: Yes, definitely. I mean if kids are into it, you can definitely point them in the right direction on what they are doing wrong, you know what I mean.
KING: The front of it is the exhilaration of going up?
BROWN: Yes. It's fun being weightless until you catch up to gravity.
KING: Just ahead, his car went airborne at more than 300 miles an hour but he's here to tell the story of why he survived and why he keeps on racing. That's next.
KING: We have saved the fastest for last. Jake and Dario are still with me. But before I get to guest number three, Tony Schumacher, let's take a look at just one of the crashes he's lived to tell about. Now keep in mind his car was traveling at over 300 miles an hour when it all happened. Watch.
Joining us from Chicago, Tony Schumacher. He survived that horrific 300-mile-an-hour crash. That was at the Memphis Motorsports Park in the Year 2000. He's four-time National Hot Rod Association Powerade world champion. He's been sponsored by the United States Army since 2000.
What happened there, Tony?
TONY SCHUMACHER, PROFESSIONAL DRAG RACER: On that particular crash, the rear wing or the spoiler came off the car at 320 miles an hour. And, you know, as any race car driver knows, you lose that rear wing or any wing on a race car and they take flight and it gets pretty ugly. Unfortunately, on that particular crash, the car flew over the wall and that's very unlikely. It happens maybe two or three times since I've been, you know, watching a race and it was just a bad time. It was a horrific crash. And the only reason I survived it is because we have an incredibly talented safety safari on the NA (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Circuit and they saved my life.
KING: How injured were you?
SCHUMACHER: I broke my left fibula in six places. I dislocated my fingers, pretty serious concussion. And, you know, I was awake through the crash. It was extremely noisy. It was very violent. Two weeks later, I was screwed back together. My leg was put back together by great doctors in Indianapolis that actually follow the Indy car circuit and they put me back together. We were fighting for a championship. And not that I wanted to be back in a car in two weeks but we were back in that car. And it was pretty intense.
KING: Why do you hot rod?
SCHUMACHER: Well, I wake up every morning like the two before, you know, I can't wait to get in a race car. And I'm sure Jake can't wait to get on a skateboard. And I think we have a gift that we get to do what we love to do. And you know it's...
KING: But why that form vehicle?
SCHUMACHER: You know, I love all forms of racing, I really do. I drive some stock cars. I actually spend a lot of time at the Richard Petty School. I went to Skip Barber years ago. And I love it all. I really do. Yes. This is a -- to me it's an 8,000 horsepower car, the most intense form of racing. It's four seconds, 337 miles an hour, no room for mistakes, no -- you know, no pit crews doing a tune- up in the middle to fix a car. It's a pretty much big moment every time you get in that car. You've got four seconds. It's awesome.
KING: No turns?
SCHUMACHER: Well, I had a pretty good turn there but you don't want to do that.
KING: All right, now, let's get the others. Dario, what do you think of the method Tony uses to travel? FRANCHITTI: I watched Tony and John Force and all the guys that race the dragsters. And I think it is an incredibly intense form of motor sport, probably maybe the most intense. And just watching that wreck there, it's amazing.
And the thing that I guess we have in common is that desire to get back in the car. I mean I've got a race this weekend in Kentucky. And there's been times before, screw me back together, put me back in the car, and I guess when that desire goes away, you get out of car and go do something else.
KING: Jake, what do you think of what Tony does?
BROWN: That crash was unbelievable. I couldn't even tell what part he was in of the car still. It looked like there was nothing left.
KING: All right, now, Dario can't wait to race again this week. Are you anxious to get back on skates?
BROWN: Yes. Yes, definitely. I can't wait to skate again. It's going to be a few weeks for me, maybe a month. But I'm just going to go heavily to the doctors and just get back to...
KING: Tony, how long before you came back after that?
SCHUMACHER: I was back in that car in two weeks. You know I made one run. I couldn't stop. We have a hand brake to stop and traveling at 300 miles an hour, we're at, you know, negative 6 G's when we're stopping. And you know after the first one I got out of car and I said, "Love to do this but I am hurt and I need to sit out a few more weeks." And I spent two more weeks in rehab getting myself back in shape and then went to Ponoma, California for the finale, for the last race of the season and actually finished second. But it took -- you know it took two or three months before I was back in the car and I felt like I was part of the car again. It's incredible.
You know Dario was talking earlier about what it takes and why he survived these crashes. All of us, that's horrific when you watch them on TV but mind you that we stay in shape. We work out extremely hard. I'm surrounded by American soldiers all the time. I drive for the U.S. Army and we train and we practice and we stay in shape, mentally, physically.
When we get into these machines we understand there's a risk but we've put ourselves in a position to drive these cars. We've woke up in the morning. We've said our prayers. We've trained. We've even, you know, taken our vitamins and done whatever it took to get in that machine.
KING: Good point.
SCHUMACHER: And, you know, we're preparing for it. And it's probably harder for our wives to watch those crashes than it is for us to be in them.
KING: Do you keep in shape, Jake?
BROWN: Yes. I've been trying to keep in shape as much as possible.
KING: I would imagine you would have to.
Tony, how did you get the Army to sponsor you?
SCHUMACHER: You know I was driving for XI Batteries in '99. We had won a world championship. And I had heard a rumor that the Army was looking for a team and they hadn't really picked what venue whether it be N.H. Ray or NASCAR. And when I heard that they had picked N.H. Ray, I actually went in and saved my head, got a flat top. And I walked in. And I am very committed. You know I'm one of those kids that grew up playing Army all the time and I thought, you know, I am not going to lose this deal for anything.
I've always said you're as good as people you surround yourself with. And I wake up every day and I've got the best group of people around me and they push me not to get back in the car but to be a champion and to win. And I feel like I've been able to give back...
KING: Got to get a break. Up next, we'll show you why once was not enough to keep Tony Schumacher off the track. You'll see his other death-defying crash. We'll have a wind-up with each of our guests when we come back.
KING: The crash we showed in our last segment from the year 2000 wasn't the only serious one that Tony Schumacher was in. Take a look at what happened three years later, same track. Oh, Tony, Tony, Tony, what happened there quickly?
SCHUMACHER: That was a brand new car. It had eight runs on it and it was missing a bar. It was a different crew chief at the time that I ordered it. The car broke in half. You know, it was -- essentially these cars are trying to drive the back of the car under the front of the car. And it broke.
And thanks to guys like Garlet that have put -- you know designed race cars with motors behind us. And you know the many crashes that we've seen before that, I survived that one. It was an intense crash.
KING: By the way, amazing. Jake Brown has a friend that's going to jump the fountains at Caesar's Palace like Evel Kneivel.
BROWN: Yes. My friend, Danny Hawaii (ph) wants to jump Caesar's Palace fountains. If Caesar's Palace is listening, Danny is ready to jump your fountains.
KING: He would be a friend of yours tonight.
Dario, when do you race again?
FRANCHITTI: I have a race on Saturday night in Kentucky.
KING: And Tony, when do you race again?
SCHUMACHER: This weekend. I actually leave tomorrow and we'll race in Brainerd, Minnesota.
KING: You never stop.
When do you think you'll be back up on the skateboard, Jake?
BROWN: I'm giving myself two weeks to four weeks.
KING: That's all?
KING: Thank you all very much. You are all amazing.
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