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Outbreak of norovirus causes quarantine of 1,200 Olympic security guards

Officials in South Korea quarantined 1,200 security guards after 41 of them at the Winter Olympic facilities at Pyeongchang had symptoms similar to the norovirus, CNN reported.

>> Read more trending news

South Korea deployed 900 military personnel after the Pyeongchang Organizing Committee (POCOG) quarantined the security guards. The POCOG said the guards suffered sudden outbreaks of diarrhea and vomited Sunday and were taken to the hospital, CNN reported. An investigation suggested the symptoms could have come from ground water being used in the food and beverages at the facilities, ESPN reported.

"The military personnel ... will be responsible for security checks of the 20 venues as they take up jobs such as security searches, previously done by civilian safety personnel, until the patients' condition is normalized," according to a statement from the POCOG.

All of the civilian guards are in stable condition, according to the statement.

Competitions at the Winter Olympics begin Feb. 8 and will continue through the closing ceremonies on Feb. 25.

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Ryan Zapolski?

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

>> Read more trending news 

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

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Bradie Tennell?

Bradie Tennell is a relative newcomer to the international figure skating stage.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Tennell, from Carpentersville, Illinois, has been skating since she was 2 years old.

>> Read more trending news 

After a big win at the U.S. National Championships, she earned her ticket to the Pyeongchang Games but she says the whole experience has been surreal.

“I can remember, you know, dreaming about it and being like, ‘Mom, I wonder what it would be like to march in the Opening Ceremonies with all those athletes and the cameras, and ‘Oh, my goodness, how cool that would be,’” Tennell told WPXI. “And now I get to go live it. It’s crazy.”

Other interesting facts:

  • Skated to the music from “Cinderella,” one of her favorite movies, at U.S. National Championships.
  • Has two younger brothers, Austin and Shane, who play ice hockey.
  • Volunteers at an assisted living home each week.
  • Enjoys cooking, swimming and skiing.

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Gus Kenworthy?

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

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Jamie Anderson?

Jamie Anderson, from South Lake Tahoe, California, won gold in the inaugural slopestyle competition in the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Over the years, she has remained in the top tier in this event. 

>> Read more trending news 

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

At the 2018 Winter Games, Anderson maintained her champion status, overcoming weather conditions to take the gold medal in women’s snowboard slopestyle.

Anderson is one of eight siblings and is active in environmental causes.

Other interesting facts: 

  • Known to hug trees before competitions to relax.
  • Won gold in the X Games slopestyle in 2007, 2008, 2012 and 2013.

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Mikaela Shiffrin?

Mikaela Shiffrin, is the youngest-ever Olympic slalom gold medalist. She won when she was 18 at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

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>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Shiffrin is widely considered to be the next great women’s ski racer. The Eagle-Vail, Colorado, native is dominant in slalom and competitive in giant slalom.

Other interesting facts:

  • Leads the overall World Cup standings for the 2016-17 season.
  • Considers Olympic gold medalist Missy Franklin to be one of her best friends.
  • Following in the footsteps of her parents, Jeff and Eileen Shiffrin, who are former collegiate skiers.

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Chloe Kim?

Chloe Kim has become one of snowboarding’s most renowned names. The 17-year-won the gold medal at the 2018 Games Feb. 13, making her the youngest female medalist in the halfpipe category.

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She has won back-to-back X Games titles in 2015 and 2016 and two gold medals at the 2016 youth Olympic Games.

Kim qualified mathematically for the U.S. Olympic team in Sochi, but at age 13, was not old enough to compete

 >> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

She could become the youngest female snowboarding medalist at the age of 17, but she may be beaten to the record by Hailey Langland, since the slopestyle competition falls one day before half-pipe. 

About Kim 

Kim was born April 23, 2000, in Long Beach, California. She was on a snowboard by the age of 4, but was not thrilled with the sport at first. Kim grew up taking trips to Mammoth with her father, who would drive six hours each way on the weekends. He would form a makeshift bed for Kim in the back seat of their SUV. 

At the age of 6, Kim entered her first competition and won junior nationals the following year. 

South Korea connection 

Kim is a first generation Korean-American. Her parents immigrated to the U.S. in 1998. Kim is fluent in Korean and her mother's side of the family lives in Seoul.

Other interesting facts:

  • Won the season-opening World Cup in New Zealand in 2018
  • Had a year-long streak that started in January 2016 at the X Games and was broken in late January 2017 at the X Games, where she finished third
  • Won gold at the 2018 Euro X Games
  • Became the first female snowboarder to land back-to-back 1080s and scored a perfect 100 to win at the 2016 U.S. Open
  • Won silver at the 2014 X Games at the age of 13

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Nick Goepper?

Nick Goepper is a 2014 Olympic bronze medalist in slopestyle and a three-time X Games champion.

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Goepper started out the 2017-18 season with a fourth-place finish at the World Cup in New Zealand.

2014 Sochi Games

Goepper was the top-ranked skier heading into Sochi. He nabbed an early lead in the slopestyle final with a promising first run, in which he landed a triple cork, but he was upstaged. Goepper's first run score was enough to score bronze. This was only the third time in history that the U.S. swept the podium at the Olympic Winter Games.

About Goepper

Goepper was born March 4, 1994, in Lawrenceburg, a small farming town in Southern Indiana. He is the eldest of four children. His two sisters were competitive gymnasts. Goepper would practice his jumps on the trampoline under the guidance of his sisters’ coach, Mary Lee Tracy, who was the assistant coach for the gold medal-winning 1996 women’s gymnastics team. 

During his middle school days, Goepper would mow lawns, pull weeds and sell candy bars in order to earn enough money to buy a ski pass for the winter. He would buy the candy bars in bulk from Costco and then sell them out of his backpack on the school bus.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Goepper was discovered at an action sports camp in Ohio at the age of 15 and was later offered a scholarship to a sports academy in Oregon.

Other interesting facts:

  • Finished second at the 2017 Euro X Games.
  • First impressive results came during the 2010-2011 season, when he placed third at the Dew Tour stop at Killington, then later won the Dumont Cup that winter.

2018 Winter Olympics: Who is Lindsey Vonn?

Lindsey Vonn is a two-time Olympic medalist who holds the women’s record for most FIS Alpine Ski World Cup wins. She won gold in downhill and bronze in super-G at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games. 

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Pyeongchang will be Vonn’s fourth Olympic Games. She has competed in the 2002, 2006 and 2010 Winter Games. 

The 32-year-old was unable to defend her title at the 2014 Sochi Olympics after suffering a serious knee injury.

>> More Olympics coverage at WPXI.com

Vonn began to ski at Buck Hill Ski Area near her family home in St. Paul, Minnesota. Her father, Alan Kildow, is a three-time national junior champion who blew out his knee at the age of 18. It was Kildow who mapped out Vonn’s skiing future. 

At the age of 11, Vonn wanted a bigger challenge than Buck Hill. Her mother quit her job of 17 years and they moved to Vail, Colorado, for the winter to train at the Ski Club Vail. The following year, her father and two brothers and two sisters also moved to Vail.

Vonn has dealt with a laundry list of injuries, including a broken arm she suffered in a November 2016 training crash, but she still managed to rewrite the record books.

Other Interesting Facts

  • Owns seven world championship medals.
  • Fourth-time winner of the overall World Cup title.
  • Owns the women’s record for most World Cup wins.
  • Closing in on the overall record of career World Cup wins.
  • Owns the women’s record for most World Cup discipline titles.
  • Eight-time winner of the World Cup downhill title.
  • Has won more World Cup downhill races than any other skier.
  • Has won more World Cup super-G races than any other skier.
  • First alpine skier to win 20 crystal globes.
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