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2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Ryan Zapolski?

Published: Monday, February 05, 2018 @ 5:11 PM

The Meaning Behind The Olympic Rings

Ice hockey goaltender Ryan Zapolski debuted at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games on Team USA’s men’s ice hockey team.

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Zapolski grew up playing hockey in Erie, Pennsylvania, at the all-male Cathedral Preparatory School and later went to Mercyhurst University. He’s been playing hockey since he was 8 years old.

WPXI spoke to Zapolski’s father, Raymond Zapolski, about how much it means for his son to be Team USA’s ice hockey goaltender in the 2018 games.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

“You could play for a Stanley Cup or that kind of thing, but playing for your country to win a gold medal, or even have a chance to, the number of people that get to do that is so infinitely small, that it gives you goose bumps and chills,” Raymond Zapolski said.

Other interesting facts:
  • Has three siblings, Brandon, Chris and Lindsay
  • Married his high school sweetheart, Elizabeth, in 2015
  • Goaltender of the Year and the East Coast Hockey League’s Most Valuable Player in the 2012-13 season with the South Carolina Stingrays
  • Hobbies include golfing and reading

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Olympian Gus Kenworthy rescues puppy from Korean dog meat farm

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 3:50 PM

After rescuing dogs at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy has rescued another puppy.

People reported that Kenworthy announced he and his boyfriend, actor Matthew Wilkas, rescued a puppy named Beemo. The Associated Press reported that the two visited visited a dog farm in Siheung, South Korea, Friday.

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“This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visited to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea,” Kenworthy said in an Instagram post. “Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don’t personally agree with it, I do agree that it’s not my place to impose western ideals on the people here.”

In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy plays with a dog at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

Kenworthy said that the farm he and Wilkas visited was being permanently closed due to the work of the Humane Society International and a farmer’s cooperation. The 87 dogs, some which are expecting litters of puppies, at the farm are being taken to North America, according to The AP.

Related: 2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

Beemo is among those dogs.

“I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks,” Kenworthy wrote. “I cannot wait to give her the best life possible!”

This morning Matt and I had a heart-wrenching visited to one of the 17,000 dog farms here in South Korea. Across the country there are 2.5 million dogs being raised for food in some of the most disturbing conditions imaginable. Yes, there is an argument to be made that eating dogs is a part of Korean culture. And, while don't personally agree with it, I do agree that it's not my place to impose western ideals on the people here. The way these animals are being treated, however, is completely inhumane and culture should never be a scapegoat for cruelty. I was told that the dogs on this particular farm were kept in "good conditions" by comparison to other farms. The dogs here are malnourished and physically abused, crammed into tiny wire-floored pens, and exposed to the freezing winter elements and scorching summer conditions. When it comes time to put one down it is done so in front of the other dogs by means of electrocution sometimes taking up to 20 agonizing minutes. Despite the beliefs of the Korean public at large, these dogs are no different from the ones we call pets back home. Some of them were even pets at one time and were stolen or found and sold into the dog meat trade. Luckily, this particular farm (thanks to the hard work of the Humane Society International and the cooperation of a farmer who's seen the error of his ways) is being permanently shut down and all 90 of the dogs here will be brought to the US and Canada where they'll find their fur-ever homes. I adopted the sweet baby in the first pic (we named her Beemo) and she'll be coming to the US to live with me as soon as she's through with her vaccinations in a short couple of weeks. I cannot wait to give her the best life possible! There are still millions of dogs here in need of help though (like the Great Pyrenees in the 2nd pic who was truly the sweetest dog ever). I'm hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the US where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes! Go to @hsiglobal's page to see how you can help. #dogsarefriendsnotfood #adoptdontshop ❤️🐶

A post shared by gus kenworthy (@guskenworthy) on

At the Sochi games, Kenworthy rescued a mother dog and three puppies. Although one puppy did not survive, the mother, Mamuchka, lives with Kentworthy’s mother in Telluride, Colorado, and Mishka and Jake live with Kentworthy’s ex-boyfriend, Robin Macdonald, in Vancouver.

“I’m hoping to use this visit as an opportunity to raise awareness to the inhumanity of the dog meat trade here in Korea and the plight of dogs everywhere, including back home in the U.S., where millions of dogs are in need of loving homes,” Kenworthy said.

The AP reported that the dogs on the farm will be vaccinated and quarantined on the farm until March.

In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas watch dogs in cages at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the Sochi Olympics four years ago and is considering adopting one of the many puppies he met Friday after finishing competition the Pyeongchang Games. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)(Ahn Young-joon/AP)

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Olympian Gus Kenworthy criticizes Ivanka Trump during closing ceremony

Published: Monday, February 26, 2018 @ 6:34 AM

7 things to know about Ivanka Trump

U.S. Olympic skier Gus Kenworthy had less-than-kind words for one of his fellow Americans at the closing ceremony for 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

>> PHOTOS: 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics - Closing Ceremony

“So proud of all these people!” he said after sharing a picture. “Everybody here has worked so hard to make it to the Olympics and have the opportunity to walk in the closing ceremony!”

>> See the tweet here

“Well… Everyone except Ivanka,” he continued, mentioning the first daughter. “Honestly, tf is she doing here??”

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Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump's daughter, led the presidential delegation in the closing ceremonies. Vice President Mike Pence appeared at the beginning of the Olympics to lead the presidential delegation in the opening ceremonies. Pence made headlines when he sat down for the Korean delegation, which included athletes from both North and South Korea.

Many criticized Kenworthy’s shot.

Others made political jokes at Ivanka Trump’s expense.

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2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

Published: Friday, February 02, 2018 @ 12:45 PM

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 23:  Professional Skier Gus Kenworthy poses in the VIP Lounge during the 2017 Global Citizen Festival in Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York City.  (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)
Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 23: Professional Skier Gus Kenworthy poses in the VIP Lounge during the 2017 Global Citizen Festival in Central Park on September 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)(Noam Galai/Getty Images for Global Citizen)

Gus Kenworthy, from Telluride, Colorado, is a 2014 Olympic silver medalist who was part of a U.S. slopestyle sweep.

Kenworthy gained attention after rescuing a mother dog and her four stray puppies in Sochi, Russia. 

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He contended in both halfpipe and slopestyle in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

In 2015, Kenworthy came out as gay. He received an outpouring of support after simply tweeting, “I am gay.”

Other interesting facts:
  • Born in London to a British mother and American father.
  • Competes in all three free skiing disciplines: halfpipe, big air and slopestyle.
  • Won seven consecutive Association of Freeskiing Professionals titles from 2011 to 2017

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U.S. women's hockey team wins Olympic gold

Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 @ 2:22 AM

WATCH: U.S. Women’s Hockey Team Wins the Gold

The United States has defeated Canada 3-2 to win the gold medal in women’s hockey at the 2018 Winter Olympics.

>> PHOTOS: 2018 Winter Olympics: U.S. women's hockey team wins gold

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GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 22: The United States celebrates after defeating Canada in a shootout to win the Women's Gold Medal Game on day thirteen of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at Gangneung Hockey Centre on February 22, 2018 in Gangneung, South Korea. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)(Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

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