'For the next hour I am pure Canadian': Matt Lauer
NBC's Today show host Matt Lauer carries the 2010 Olympic flame as it makes its way through Burnaby, B.C. Thursday. (CARMINE MARINELLI, 24 HOURS)
Three hundred metres was all it took for NBC superstar host Matt Lauer to turn red.
Not because he was tired, but from the dozens of Canadian flags that lined Canada Way as he ran with the Olympic torch Thursday.
"It didn't matter at all. I felt like saying 'go Canada go,'" Lauer said. "For the next hour I am pure Canadian."
The host will be a regular fixture during Vancouver's Games as The Today Show is broadcasting live each morning from Grouse Mountain.
But his run meant much more to Lauer than a simply publicity stunt.
"Especially seeing the children cheering, you hope that they're going to remember this for the rest of their lives, the moment the torch came through their town. And to be the person chosen to carry it, it's a huge thrill."
Lauer's run went right by the Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion and the home's residents all came out to take in the spectacle.
"Everyone has been excited for a few days," said community worker Bevin Hinton. "You want (the Olympics) to be successful because you want the city to make money to help these people."
The Olympic torch will make its final stop Friday at B.C. Place Stadium for the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.