A 17-year-old girl is clinging to life after the latest school shooting, researchers find a degenerative disease in a pro baseball player, and optimists across the country are planning what they'd do with an extra $550 million.
Welcome to the Monday edition of “5 Things to Know for Your New Day." Every weekday morning around 6, we’ll hit the top five stories of the day, clue you in on a few other buzzy items and let you know about some of the must-watch stories coming up on CNN’s morning show “New Day.”
1. NORTHEAST SNOWSTORM
What a mess: After a weekend storm dumped a foot of snow in New England, it’s time for the encore: an arctic chill that will leave much of the Northeast stuck below freezing.
OK, so winter jumped the gun a bit this year. Why does that matter? Because you might have to hurry up with the holiday gifts. FedEx says the nasty weather and high winds have caused major disruptions at its Memphis hub and could delay shipments across the country.
But Southerners can once again bask in the warmth of temps in the 50s and 60s after days of flirting with the freezing mark.
Alexandra Field will be live at the top of the 6, 7 and 8 o’clock hours with the latest on the weather and how it’s hampering holiday shopping.
2. BRAIN INJURIES IN BASEBALL
Not just a football problem: When he was on the baseball field, Ryan Freel was never afraid to fling his body and his head into plays - diving after balls and crashing into outfield walls.
But Freel will never know he had chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the same brain disease that several pro football players had when they committed suicide. That’s because Freel took his own life last December, months before researchers determined he had CTE.
Elizabeth Cohen will bring us the latest in the 6 and 8 o’clock hours, including which NFL player’s body will be exhumed and tested for CTE.
3. COLORADO SCHOOL SHOOTING
Clinging to life: She wasn’t the intended target, but rather the random victim of yet another school shooting in Colorado.
Supporters across the country are rallying behind Claire Davis, the 17-year-old senior who was shot in the head Friday and remains in a coma.
The Twitter hashtag #PrayForClaire has gone viral, with many calling for the band One Direction - one of the teen's favorites - to support or visit Claire.
Casey Wian will bring us the latest in the 6, 7 and 8 o’clock hours, including dispatch recordings from the ordeal and how school officials prevented the 80-second rampage from being much worse.
4. SISTER WIVES RULING
The more, the merrier? A federal judge in Utah has struck down part of that state's law banning polygamy after a lawsuit by the stars of the TV reality show "Sister Wives."
The judge threw out the section prohibiting "cohabitation," saying it violates due process and religious freedom. But he reinforced the ban on bigamy, meaning no one can be legally married to more than one person. Kody Brown, the patriarch in “Sister Wives,” is legally married to only one woman and has “spiritual” marriages with his three other wives.
At least one of Brown’s wives is thrilled:
Jonathan Turley, the attorney for Brown and his four wives, will join us live in the 7 a.m. hour to talk about the case.
5. INDIANA GROOM DEATH
From elation to tragedy: It was supposed to be one of the happiest days of his life. William Riley Knight and his new wife had just gotten married and were leaving the reception when – true to Knight’s character – he pulled over to help a woman having car trouble.
As they stood by the side of the road, Knight and the woman, Linda Darlington, were struck multiple times. Both died. Knight’s wife, still wearing her wedding dress, wasn’t hurt – but will never be able to spend a full day with her new husband.
Those are your five biggies for the day. Here are a few others that are brewing and have the Internet buzzing.
Mega Millions – We’ll spare you the clichés about how you’re more likely to get struck by lightning or get killed by a comet than win the $550 million jackpot. Because we’re glass-half-full kinda folks. So instead, here’s an awesome montage of what you COULD buy if you DID win:
Crane drops building – Rough day for this crane operator. But no doubt the guy in the blue jacket may have had the luckiest day of his life:
How to wrap a cat for Christmas - The most remarkable part of this video is that the cat actually obeyed:
There you go. All you need to know to get an early start to your morning. Be sure to tune in to "New Day" from 6 to 9 a.m. ET, join us at CNN.com/NewDay and go and have a GREAT NEW DAY!