Today in History

Today is Saturday, June 8, the 159th day of 2013. There are 206 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlights in History:

On June 8, 1953, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously that restaurants in the District of Columbia could not refuse to serve blacks. Eight tornadoes struck Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, killing 126 people, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; most of the deaths were caused by an extremely powerful twister in Flint.

On this date:

In A.D. 632, the prophet Muhammad died in Medina.

In 1845, Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States, died in Nashville, Tenn.

In 1861, voters in Tennessee approved an Ordinance of Secession passed the previous month by the state legislature.

In 1915, Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan resigned in a disagreement with President Woodrow Wilson over U.S. handling of the sinking of the Lusitania.

In 1942, Bing Crosby recorded “Adeste Fideles” and “Silent Night” in Los Angeles for Decca Records.

In 1967, 34 U.S. servicemen were killed when Israel attacked the USS Liberty, a Navy intelligence-gathering ship in the Mediterranean. (Israel later said the Liberty had been mistaken for an Egyptian vessel.)

In 1972, during the Vietnam War, an Associated Press photographer captured the image of 9-year-old Phan Thi Kim Phuc (fahn thee kihm fook) as she ran naked and severely burned from the scene of a South Vietnamese napalm attack.

In 1973, Gen. Francisco Franco relinquished his post as Spain’s prime minister while remaining as chief of state.

In 1978, a jury in Clark County, Nev., ruled the so-called “Mormon will,” purportedly written by the late billionaire Howard Hughes, was a forgery.

In 1982, President Ronald Reagan became the first American chief executive to address a joint session of the British Parliament.

In 1987, Fawn Hall began testifying at the Iran-Contra hearings, describing how, as secretary to National Security aide Oliver L. North, she helped to shred some documents and spirit away others.

In 1998, the National Rifle Association elected actor Charlton Heston its president.

Ten years ago: Frustrated and angry over delays, a coalition of the nation’s mayors meeting in Denver asked federal officials to bypass state governments and give them the money they needed to beef up homeland security. Poland voted to join the European Union in 2004. Annika Sorenstam won the LPGA Championship for her fifth major title. Spain’s Juan Carlos Ferrero won the French Open men’s final with a 6-1, 6-3, 6-2 victory over Martin Verkerk. George Foreman was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. The Broadway show “Hairspray” won eight Tony Awards, including best musical; “Take Me Out,” Richard Greenberg’s play about a gay baseball player, was chosen best play.

Five years ago: Skyla Whitaker, 11, and Taylor Placker, 13, were shot to death along a country road near Weleetka, Okla. (A suspect, Kevin Sweat, faces trial.) A man went on a knifing rampage in Tokyo, killing seven people. Rafael Nadal won his fourth consecutive French Open title in a rout, 6-1, 6-3, 6-0, again spoiling Roger Federer’s bid to complete a career Grand Slam. Yani Tseng of Taiwan became the first rookie in 10 years to win a major, beating Maria Hjorth on the fourth hole of a playoff with a 5-foot birdie on the 18th hole to win the LPGA Championship in Maryland.

One year ago: President Barack Obama declared “the private sector is doing fine,” prompting Republican Mitt Romney to ask, “Is he really that out of touch?” (Obama quickly clarified his remarks, saying it was “absolutely clear that the economy is not doing fine.”) In Cairo, Egypt, a mob of hundreds of men assaulted women holding a march demanding an end to sexual harassment. I’ll Have Another’s bid for the first Triple Crown in 34 years ended shockingly in the barn and not on the racetrack when the colt was scratched the day before the Belmont Stakes and retired from racing with a swollen tendon. Kevin Millwood and five Seattle relievers combined on a no-hitter, the third in franchise history, and the Mariners beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 1-0.

Today’s Birthdays: Former first lady Barbara Bush is 88. Actor-comedian Jerry Stiller is 86. Comedian Joan Rivers is 80. Actress Millicent Martin is 79. Actor James Darren is 77. Actor Bernie Casey is 74. Singer Nancy Sinatra is 73. Singer Chuck Negron (Three Dog Night) is 71. Musician Boz Scaggs is 69. Rock musician Mick Box (Uriah Heep) is 66. Author Sara Paretsky is 66. Actress Sonia Braga is 63. Actress Kathy Baker is 63. Country musician Tony Rice is 62. Rock singer Bonnie Tyler is 62. Actor Griffin Dunne is 58. “Dilbert” creator Scott Adams is 56. Actor-director Keenen Ivory Wayans is 55. Singer Mick Hucknall (Simply Red) is 53. Musician Nick Rhodes (Duran Duran) is 51. Rhythm-and-blues singer Doris Pearson (Five Star) is 47. Actress Julianna Margulies is 46. Actor Dan Futterman is 46. Actor David Sutcliffe is 44. Actor Kent Faulcon is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Nicci Gilbert is 43. Actress Kelli Williams is 43. Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., is 43. Actor Mark Feuerstein is 42. Contemporary Christian musician Mike Scheuchzer (MercyMe) is 38. Actor Eion Bailey is 37. Rapper Kanye (KAHN’-yay) West is 36. Blues-rock musician Derek Trucks (The Derek Trucks Band) is 34. Folk-bluegrass singer-musician Sara Watkins (Nickel Creek) is 32. Actress Torrey DeVitto is 29.

Thought for Today: “I do believe one ought to face facts. If you don’t they get behind you and may become terrors, nightmares, giants, horrors. As long as one faces them one is top dog.” — Katherine Mansfield, New Zealander author (1888-1923).

(Above Advance for Use Saturday, June 8)

Copyright 2013, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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