Cauldron will be lit during opneing ceremonies


    By Brittany Steadman

    The mystery of who will light the Olympic cauldron will finally be revealed on Feb. 8 in the opening ceremonies.

    The well-kept secret has left some wondering at the different prospects of who will represent America in starting the Olympic games.

    “This year has brought so many changes to America that I think someone who was involved with Sept. 11 might light the cauldron,” said John Holmes, Logistics Manager for International Sports Broadcasting at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

    Historically, a prominent athlete of the host country lights the cauldron.

    In Nagano, Japan, former Olympic figure skating silver medallist Midori Ito lit the cauldron for the 1998 games.

    However, the events that have happened in America the last few months leave many wondering if someone involved with the attacks will light the cauldron.

    “I think Rudy Giuliani will light the cauldron because he helped America so much after the terrorist attacks,” said Ann Bagley, a Salt Lake City resident.

    Others, like Andrea Green, 25, a University of Utah student from Bountiful majoring in Telecom, disagrees with her because Giuliani participated in the torch relay in New York.

    Green thinks an athlete will have the honor.

    “I think Lance Armstrong will light the cauldron and represent athletes,” Green said.

    Although Armstrong, a three time Tour de France champion participates in a summer sport, Green said he is an inspiration to all athletes.

    There is some guessing that the unique trials America has gone through will result in a torchbearer different from previous years to light the cauldron.

    Holmes said that because of the upsurge in patriotism in America he would not be surprised if a survivor or widow of the World Trade Center Attack lights the cauldron.

    Cassie Taylor, 21, a junior from Texas majoring in civil engineering, said she thinks it will be someone connected to Sept. 11.

    “I heard that the widow of the man who called his wife on the plane and said they were going to stop the terrorists will light the cauldron,” Taylor said.

    Despite the attacks, Tony Kundra, a professional figure skater and camera operator for the opening ceremonies, said he still believes an athlete will kick off the games.

    “A lot of the people that survived the attacks or were widowed have already run the torch in the relay,” Kundra said.

    Kundra said an athlete who symbolizes the strength of Americans should have the honor of lighting the cauldron.

    Kundra said he thinks one athlete that could do the job is Olympic Alpine skier champion Picabo Street.

    Mitt Romney made the decision of who will light the cauldron back in August.

    This means that the torchbearer would most likely not be associated with Sept. 11.

    However Romney could have changed his plans after the attacks.

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