Tommy Kono
USA Weightlifting

Tommy Kono, Olympic weightlifting legend, dies at 85

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Tommy Kono, arguably the greatest weightlifter in U.S. history, died Sunday at age 85 due to complications from liver disease, according to NBC’s affiliate in Hawaii.

Kono won Olympic gold in 1952 and 1956, silver in 1960 and six straight World titles from 1953 to 1959.

He set 26 world records across four weight classes and was inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame and the International Weightlifting Hall of Fame.

“For some reason, Hawaii thinks of people as their own people, like a family or something like that, and this is why here in Hawaii I feel completely at home,” Kono said in 2012, according to “I moved here in 1955, and I’ve been here ever since.”

Kono, who struggled with asthma as a child, and his Japanese-American parents were moved from Sacramento to an internment camp at Tule Lake, Calif., during World War II.

“I’ve accepted the fact that they [the U.S. government] had to do it, you have to live with it, and that’s it,” Kono said in 2015, according to Kyodo News.

Kono was later drafted into the U.S. Army for the Korean War but was kept home after officials learned of his Olympic potential.

“So you could say that weightlifting may have saved my life, because instead of getting shipped to Korea, I had a bigger assignment that was to represent the United States at the Olympics in Helsinki [in 1952], and that was a great opportunity for me,” Kono said, according to

MORE: U.S. Olympic team reaches 100 qualified athletes

IOC pledges €500,000 to help restore Notre Dame ahead of 2024 Olympics

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The International Olympic Committee plans to donate €500,000 ($562,000) to the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral in the 2024 Olympic host city.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday that he wants to see Notre Dame restored within five years.

“The aim of completing the reconstruction in time for Paris 2024 will be an extra motivation for all of us,” IOC president Thomas Bach wrote in a Wednesday letter to Paris 2024 chief Tony Estanguet, according to a translation by Agence France-Presse, which reported Notre Dame is on the planned marathon and road cycling routes. “All the Olympic Movement and in particular the IOC have been extremely touched by the instantaneous connection the French have made between Notre Dame cathedral and the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.”

More than $500 million has been pledged overall from around the globe after a fire ravaged the 850-year-old cathedral on Monday.

NBC News has more on the Notre Dame fire here.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Patrick Kane joined by NHL All-Stars on world championship roster

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NHL All-Stars Jack EichelRyan Suter and Cory Schneider join previously named captain Patrick Kane to lead the U.S. at next month’s world hockey championship in Slovakia, seeking the nation’s first title at a standalone worlds since 1933.

Sixteen players were added to the roster in Thursday’s announcement with more to come before worlds open May 10 and more teams get eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, making more players available. The IIHF allows up to 25 players per nation.

Detroit Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill will be the U.S. head coach for a third straight worlds. The Americans lost in the quarterfinals in 2017 and earned bronze in 2018, sandwiching an Olympic quarterfinal exit in PyeongChang without NHL players.

Sweden is trying to become the first nation to three-peat at worlds since the Czech Republic in 2001.

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Preliminary IIHF World Championship Roster

Alex DeBrincat (Chicago Blackhawks)
Jack Eichel (Buffalo Sabres)
Luke Glendening (Detroit Red Wings)
Patrick Kane (Chicago Blackhawks)
Clayton Keller (Arizona Coyotes)
Chris Kreider (New York Rangers)
Dylan Larkin (Detroit Red Wings)
James van Riemsdyk (Philadelphia Flyers)
Frank Vatrano (Florida Panthers)
Colin White (Ottawa Senators)

Quinn Hughes (Vancouver Canucks)
Alec Martinez (Los Angeles Kings)
Brady Skjei (New York Rangers)
Ryan Suter (Minnesota Wild)

Thatcher Demko (Vancouver Canucks)
Cayden Primeau (Laval (AHL))
Cory Schneider (New Jersey Devils)