Sometimes the universe puts a person in your life when you need them the most.
Our next guest walked 30 feet
across a ski lift cable to cut a skier free who was hanging from his back pack.
From Colorado, Golden, Colorado,
please welcome Micky Wilson and the man who he saved, Richard.
What a crazy story!
So you happened to meet that day, or when did you meet exactly?
>> So I'm a professional slack liner, that's my main job.
But I teach ski school on the weekends and stuff for a part-time job.
And we had never met before, but we had these mutual friends.
So we went to go ski together that morning, and that was our first meeting.
>> Coincidence number one, but he also bought me a burrito that morning, too.
>> [LAUGH] >> You gotta be fueled for ski day.
>> So, all right, so there's four of you, right?
>> Exactly. >> So you get on, and
because you're a nice guy, you said I'm gonna ride alone on the ski lift,
is that right?
>> Sure, yeah,
I wanted these guys to be able to catch up since they knew each other from before.
But I didn't really know them, I didn't know Mickey at least.
So we had been skiing all day, it's not a big deal.
Usually when you're riding the chairlift, it's just part of the activity.
We're there for the powder.
The chair lift is just one part of it.
>> It was a great powder day.
>> So you're on, and what do you remember about it?
>> Well, not very much.
There's little figments that I think are memories where basically, I could see
the snow in front of me and I could see going backwards which is always unusual.
If you're on a chair lift you should be going forward and off.
But all of a sudden I just remembered that my vision was constricting,
and that was it.
That's all I remembered of it.
>> And then you passed out?
>> And then I passed out.
>> You were out for at least four minutes.
So he's hanging by his neck, right?
When did you notice that he was hanging?
>> So yeah, he went ahead of us.
Hans, Billy and I were behind him.
And we get off the chairlift expecting to see our friend,
and he's not there and that's the first uncommon thing.
And then we heard a scream or
a yell behind us drawing our attention back to the ski lift behind us.
And then we heard one more scream and the ski lift stopped, and
that's when we knew things were off.
So we take off our skis and we run down the hill.
And we see him hanging pretty much like that.
And we realize that things are not well and we get pretty scared.
And then we start hearing other people yell, and his best friend, Hans,
starts yelling, he's choking, he's choking, my God, he's choking.
And that's when [SOUND] we start acting.
>> Okay, because there was no way anyone was gonna get to him in time, and
he's not moving.
>> His feet were about ten feet off the ground.
>> So when you say professional slackliner,
I don't think people understand what that is.
You're basically you walk on cable.
Like- >> Not quite exactly, there you go,
that's a slackline.
Slacklining is the evolution of tightrope walking,
you could say, only we've lost the big static steel cable and
the 40-foot pole like Philippe Petit, and we just use our arms to balance.
That's a blindfold on him, nice.
[LAUGH] >> [LAUGH]
>> I can't believe you do that.
>> It's really intrinsic to humans to balance.
>> That's intrinsic to us?
>> [LAUGH] >> Absolutely.
>> It's not intrinsic to any of us here.
It's you only.
But that's amazing, okay.
So the fact that this guy happens to be,
says hello to you earlier in the day with your friends.
And so then so then you get up, and did you do that on the cable or did you-
>> Not exactly, so
I just get on the cable and I slide across it really fast,
as fast as I can, and I get over- >> With your hands?
>> Yeah, yeah, kinda like this [SOUND], butt scooting basically.
>> Butt scooting.
>> Butt scooting.
>> Okay, so you're, okay, there you are.
>> Yeah, and I swing down onto chairlift, but as I'm swinging down I realize,
I don't have my knife.
And I usually carry a knife in most outdoor situations.
It's a good thing to have.
And right at that moment, the Arapahoe Basin ski patrol had arrived.
And the ski patrolman down at the bottom made the world's most perfect toss,
20 feet up.
And I catch it.
I have a hurt hand, and I catch it with my hurt hand, which is a miracle too.
Pull the blade out, cut him loose, and eight ski patrolmen or
something jump on him and do CPR.
>> Cuz he had been out for- >> [APPLAUSE]
>> Yeah, yeah.
>> Thanks, buddy.
>> [APPLAUSE] >> Yeah, God.
>> I know you didn't wanna do this, Richard.
I appreciate you being here, but you didn't wanna talk about this.
And then you changed your mind, why?
>> I wanted to keep the focus on the real hero here,
in the rescue, and I didn't think I had much to contribute to that story.
And I really think the story is about the miracle of Mickey having the skills and
the ability to jump up there and do what he did in that instance.
And he called me up and said, I got this opportunity.
Ellen wants to meet us, and I said, wow.
I mean, it's Ellen, right, so?
>> [LAUGH] >> So I really like you and
I wanted to come do it.
>> I asked him four more times for Good Morning, America, other people, and
he was pretty adamant about just leaving that up other people.
But he was stoked to talk to you.
>> All right.
>> He really believes in you and your cause and all the great things you do.
>> And I needed.
>> [APPLAUSE] >> [CROSSTALK]
>> I wanted to be able to say thank you
publicly and not just be part of the news cycle.
So I'm just really thankful for the opportunity to do it here.
>> I wanna say thank you to Mickey.
>> [APPLAUSE] >> Don't forget Arapahoe Basin ski patrol,
best ski patrol in the world.
>> Yeah and that- >> Talking about.
>> Yeah, the ski patrol as well.
I mean, but it really is, the whole story, the fact that you were a swimmer and
then you would practice holding your breath under water to go from one end
to the other end of the pool.
And that is what helped you, the fact that you weren't breathing for four minutes.
Your body was okay to not breathe for that long.
>> Right. >> Cuz most people I think would have,
I mean, you're hanging by your neck.
And you'd have what? Just a tweaked neck?
Is that it?
>> A broken rib, and yeah, a little bit sore here and there.
A few bruises, but that's it.
>> It's a miracle.
It's a miracle that.
Listen, we wanna give you a gift.
You love the cold and you love snow.
But we wanna send you someplace warm.
So thanks to Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Hawaiian Airlines,
you're each getting a seven night stay for two on Hawaii's big island.
>> [APPLAUSE] >> Now, you're gonna enjoy breakfast and
view beautiful beaches.
>> We wanna go, it's Hawaii, let's go.
>> [APPLAUSE] >> Thank you, thank you.
>> You can go separately, but I'd bring him with you if I were you.
>> Right. >> Yeah.
>> [LAUGH] >> I want to thank Kerry Washington,
I'll see you tomorrow, be kind to one another, bye.