Tuesday, August 12, 2008

This Day In History: August 12

Today's Highlight in History:
On Aug. 12, 1944, during World War II, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr., eldest son of Joseph and Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy, was killed with his co-pilot when their explosives-laden Navy plane blew up over England.

On this date:
In 1867, President Andrew Johnson sparked a move to impeach him as he defied Congress by suspending Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton.

In 1898, fighting in the Spanish-American War came to an end.

In 1953, the Soviet Union conducted a secret test of its first hydrogen bomb.

In 1960, the first balloon satellite, the Echo 1, was launched by the United States from Cape Canaveral, Fla.

In 1962, one day after launching Andrian Nikolayev into orbit, the Soviet Union also sent up cosmonaut Pavel Popovich; both men landed safely Aug. 15.

In 1978, Pope Paul VI, who had died Aug. 6 at age 80, was buried in St. Peter's Basilica.

In 1981, IBM introduced its first personal computer, the model 5150.

In 1985, the world's worst single-aircraft disaster occurred as a crippled Japan Air Lines Boeing 747 on a domestic flight crashed into a mountain, killing 520 people.

In 1988, the controversial movie "The Last Temptation of Christ," directed by Martin Scorsese, opened in nine cities despite objections by some Christians who felt the film was sacrilegious.

In 2000, the Russian nuclear submarine Kursk and its 118-man crew were lost during naval exercises in the Barents Sea.

Ten years ago: Swiss banks agreed to pay $1.2 billion as restitution to Holocaust survivors to settle claims for their assets.

Five years ago: Liberia's leading rebel movement agreed to lift its siege of the capital and vital port, allowing food to flow to hundreds of thousands of hungry people.

One year ago: A gunman opened fire in the sanctuary of a southwest Missouri church, killing a pastor and two worshippers. (Suspect Eiken Elam Saimon is charged with murder.) Crooner, talk show host and game show producer Merv Griffin died in Los Angeles at age 82. Tiger Woods captured the PGA Championship to win at least one major for the third straight season and run his career total to 13.

Today's Birthdays: Former Sen. Dale Bumpers, D-Ark., is 83. Actor George Hamilton is 69. Actress Jennifer Warren is 67. Rock singer-musician Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits) is 59. Singer Kid Creole is 58. Jazz musician Pat Metheny is 54. Actor Sam J. Jones is 54. Actor Bruce Greenwood is 52. Country singer Danny Shirley is 52. Pop musician Roy Hay (Culture Club) is 47. Rapper Sir Mix-A-Lot is 45. Actor Peter Krause is 43. Tennis player Pete Sampras is 37. Actor Michael Ian Black is 37. Actress Rebecca Gayheart is 36. Actor Casey Affleck is 33. Rock musician Bill Uechi (Save Ferris) is 33. Actress Maggie Lawson is 28. Actress Dominique Swain is 28. Actress Imani Hakim ("Everybody Hates Chris") is 15.

Thought for Today: "Regrets are as personal as fingerprints." — Margaret Culkin Banning, American writer (1891-1982).

Courtesy of Edwin1961 and the AP
This Week In Étudiant News (2007): Liz let us know that the annual Perseid Meteor Shower peaked on August 12-13. The peak occurred today at 7:00 AM EST.

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