Thousands gather for somber ceremony

Updated: February 20, 2010, 4:21 PM ET
Associated Press

BAKURIANI, Georgia -- A nation that had hoped to watch one of its most promising young athletes compete in the Olympics gathered instead Saturday to mourn him, more than a week after the luger was thrown to his death in a practice run at the Vancouver Games.

Nodar Kumaritashvili, 21, died after slamming into a steel pole on the luge course hours before the opening ceremony. He lost control of his sled during a training run, shot off course and slammed into a trackside steel pole at nearly ...

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