NBC to air Jessica Long feature during Sochi coverage this weekend – Watch trailers here

  16 Jared Anderson | February 19th, 2014 | Europe, International, National, News, Paralympic & IPC Swimming, Video

pinit fg en rect gray 28 NBC to air Jessica Long feature during Sochi coverage this weekend Watch trailers here

During coverage of the Sochi Winter Olympics this weekend, NBC will air a 20-minute feature on Paralympic swimmer Jessica Long. Long, widely considered one of the top Paralympians in the world, was born in Russia before being adopted by American parents and growing up in a suburb of Baltimore, MD.

The NBC feature, titled Long Way Home: The Jessica Long Story, follows the 21-year-old double-amputee on a journey back to Russia to meet her birth parents. Long tracks her childhood back to an Irkutsk, Russia orphanage, and from there to Bratsk, a Siberian town where Long, originally named Tatiana Olegovna Kirillova, meets her Russian parents as well as her biological brothers and sisters.

NBC’s press release announcing the feature described it like this:

“It’s an adventure that takes her more than 7,000 miles from the world and family she grew up knowing.  From the States to Siberia, the journey is a test for her physically and mentally, but through it all Long poignantly takes us through the process of coming to grips with her Russian roots. In the end it leads her to a profound personally discovery, her two half’s have helped make her the whole individual that she is – Jessica Tatiana Long.”

You can watch one of the two short trailers for the feature at the top of this post (courtesy of NBC Olympics). The other is below:

Watch for the 12-time Paralympic gold medalist’s story on NBC this weekend. To learn more about Long, you can visit her website, JessicaLong.com.

NBC is also promoting the hashtag #WelcomeJessicaHome for those who wish to follow the story on Twitter or join in the conversation.

Comments

  1. Thereik says:
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    A beautiful young woman, a beautiful story, and a wonderful expression of the miraculous in everyday lives. The reunion with her birth mother is especially poignant. In another world, giving her daughter up to an orphanage will be judged as ‘abandonment’. Yet with the benefit of the whole story, only by doing so, could Jessica have achieved all that she has achieved in her youth. One almost feels that at the moment she was left at the orphanage, the ‘heavenly hosts’ initiated a series of events that would create joy out of what would ordinarily have been misery. Her adoptive parents in Baltimore are truly a Godsend. Her story is illustrative of the life affirming power of Love. Her story is truly inspirational.

  2. Jeannie Parisi says:
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    Just watched the entire story and I was so moved by Jessica and her adoptive family and her biological family. What a wonderful young lady with a wonderful outlook and my hats off to Mr and Mrs Long, they gave her such inspiration and it has lead her where she is today

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    Totally remarkable story , brought tears to my eyes.

    • Tatiana says:
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      I am Russian, from Siberia… Brought a whole lot of emotions.. I know in reality HOW it is there. I can only imagine what the parents went through especially at this age. Even if they were older it is practically impossible to provide same quality & choices to kids like Jessica over there. I’m glad Jessica found strength to forgive them & give them a chance to see you live, which does not happen usually… I’m really glad the story has a happy ending! Bless you, both families! And a big thank you to you, Mr. and Mrs. Long! BTW, my name is Tatiana too :-)

  4. Connie says:
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    Your story made me cry,… overwhelming to see the Strong Emotions from the One who gave you up….your Biological Mom. I too am THANKFUL for the Woman who gave me LIFE…she made a great choice for me. I KNOW the LORD KNOWS who she is.

  5. Kathleen says:
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    My husband and I watched the story with our Russian-born “Princess”, Sasha, whom we adopted 3 years ago when she was 5-years old. Also born in Eastern Russia, we sat with bated breath to watch as Jessica’s birth parents emerged from their home (with the typical brightly-coloured front door). I cried like a baby when Jessica and her Birth Mother embraced, while watching her Birth Father just weep uncontrollably (in shame and embarrassment, most likely, but also in relief and gratitude that the disabled little girl they last saw 20+ years ago—had had a glorious, loving, successful and accomplished life, 1/2 a world away).

    Although our daughter had always told us that she “never wanted to go back to Russia” (because she now has a better life in North America), she somehow changed her mind, after having watched NBC’s up-close-and-personal story. She now wants to return to Russia, to meet her Birth Mother (her Birth Father, a Russian Army Sergeant, died in Afghanistan when our daughter was less than 1-year old), whom, she supposed, “had not seen me since I was a baby”.

    The tribute was moving and joyful and, once again, I cried throughout the last 10-minutes!

    Good job NBC and congratulations to Jessica Tatiana Long!

  6. Pauline Cole says:
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    I saw this story & tears came to my eyes. .What God can do, let no man put asunder. ..Congrats to NBC.

  7. Jim Fosmoe says:
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    What a moving and emotional event! I can’t even slightly fathom the emotions and feelings that transpired that day in Russia. The “reunion video” was just fantastic!

  8. Reggie says:
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    What an awesome, powerful message of love and forgiveness! It was the best story during the Olympics – they should make a full length movie about her life!

  9. donna says:
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    Amazing story,

  10. Kim says:
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    My 16 year old son and I watched Jessica’s story together. He was also in a Russian orphanage till he was 16 months old. She was such an inspiration to him as he dreamed of returning to his orphanage some day. I sobbed, as I could feel her excitement and fear. Thank You NBC and Jessica for sharing this story and giving so many Russian adopted children a glimpse of what could be.

  11. David says:
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    I gave up all hope in today’s young people, but this story gave me hope again! God/Jesus is still in style!

  12. Diane E. says:
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    JESSICA LONG FEATURE was tremendously moving and such a great story. I love the background song and am wondering who the artist is and what the song title is…

    Thanks,
    Diane

  13. Abby says:
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    I am very sad that I didn’t here about this documentary until after it had aired. Does anyone know where I can watch it?

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    I just watched this story and it was beautiful.
    Jessicas bio sister is so familiar looking, is she an actress or something?? Thank you if anyone has the answer

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About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career sixteen years and running wasn’t enough for this native Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for SwimSwam.com, covering swimming at every …

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