18 News legend Carl Proper carries the Olympic flame for the 1996 Summer Olympics

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(WETM) – In 1996, 18 News legend Carl Proper had the honor of carrying the Olympic flame as it made its way to Atlanta.

The Olympic flame began in Los Angeles on April 27, 1996, and made the nearly three-month journey to Atlanta for the opening ceremony. The flame went from southern California to Seattle before stretching across the midwest, down to New Orleans, back up to Minneapolis, and across the east coast before going south.

When the flame arrived in New York, 18 News Anchor Carl Proper was one of the torch runners who brought it through western New York.

Carl ran the three and a half pound lit torch for about half a mile before handing it off to another runner. To prepare for the run, he speed-walked four miles a day and carried a pipe wrench from his toolkit.

“So here I am on my walking treadmill with my three and a half pound torch/pipe wrench in the air, and that’s how I trained.”

“I’ve done some interesting interviews, I’ve met some interesting people, but this really is a wonderful event in my life.”

This year marks the 25th anniversary of when Carl ran the torch through western New York. He served as an anchor for 18 News for more than 40 years and retired in 2006.

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