Date: 21st December 2000
Movie star KEVIN COSTNER has wired $500 (£333) to a retired Russian soldier after learning he's responsible for stopping a nuclear crisis in Cuba.
Costner is among the stars in new movie THIRTEEN DAYS - about the Cuban missile crisis in 1962 - and admits the more he researched his role the more he realised just how close America came to full-scale war.
He says, "The president was saying we are going to war in something like 24 hours. We didn't have to summon the troops, the troops were in position. "I saw this thing on TV, it was this amazing story of a guy, a Russian soldier, who kept us from going to war in like two minutes. "He lives off of $50 a month, so I'm sending him $500, that should last him a few years by that standard. I hope everyone in America does and looks up this guy who kept us from being blown out of our beds."
Costner admits he has a hazy memory of the crisis as a child. He adds, "Things would be different. I would come into my house and everything would be quiet as if there was a funeral. We didn't have a bomb shelter and I wanted to put candles and canned food and sleeping bags in there. I thought of it as being a very fun thing to do." (KL/WNWC/NFA)