Today is Tuesday, June 30, the 181st day of 2009. There are 184 days left in the year.
Thought for Today: “Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.“-Sir Arthur Wing Pinero, English dramatist (1855-1934).
Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 30, 1859, French acrobat Charles Blondin (born Jean Francois Gravelet) walked back and forth on a tightrope above the gorge of Niagara Falls as thousands of spectators watched.
In 1906, President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Pure Food and Drug Act and the Meat Inspection Act.
In 1908, the Tunguska Event took place in Russia as an asteroid exploded above Siberia, leaving 800 square miles of scorched or blown-down trees.
In 1921, President Warren G. Harding nominated former President William Howard Taft to be chief justice of the United States, succeeding the late Edward Douglass White.
In 1934, Adolf Hitler carried out his “blood purge” of political and military rivals in Germany in what came to be known as “The Night of the Long Knives.“
In 1936, the novel “Gone with the Wind” by Margaret Mitchell was published in New York.
In 1958, the U.S. Senate passed the Alaska statehood bill by a vote of 64-20.
In 1963, Pope Paul VI was crowned the 262nd head of the Roman Catholic Church.
In 1971, a Soviet space mission ended in tragedy when three cosmonauts aboard Soyuz 11 were found dead inside their spacecraft after it had returned to Earth.
In 1984, John Turner was sworn in as Canada’s 17th prime minister, succeeding Pierre Elliott Trudeau.
In 1985, 39 American hostages from a hijacked TWA jetliner were freed in Beirut after being held 17 days.
Ten years ago: The Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the first time in two years, boosting the target for the funds rate a quarter-point to five percent. On the day the independent counsel law expired, Kenneth Starr wrapped up the Whitewater phase of his investigation as presidential friend Webster Hubbell pleaded guilty to a felony and a misdemeanor.
Five years ago: A federal appeals court approved an antitrust settlement Microsoft had negotiated with the Justice Department. The Iraqis took legal custody of Saddam Hussein and 11 of his top lieutenants, a first step toward the ousted dictator’s expected trial for crimes against humanity. After nearly seven years of travel, the international Cassini spacecraft entered Saturn’s orbit.
One year ago: President George W. Bush signed legislation to pay for the war operations in Iraq and Afghanistan for the rest of his presidency and beyond, hailing the $162 billion plan as a rare product of bipartisan cooperation. The United States announced that it was charging Saudi Arabian Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri with “organizing and directing” the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole in waters off Yemen-and would seek the death penalty.
Singer Lena Horne is 92
Actor Tony Musante is 73
Actress Nancy Dussault is 73
Singer Glenn Shorrock is 65
Jazz musician Stanley Clarke is 58
Actor David Garrison is 57
Rock musician Hal Lindes (Dire Straits) is 56
Actor-comedian David Alan Grier is 53
Actor Vincent D’Onofrio is 50
Actress Deirdre Lovejoy is 47
Actor Rupert Graves is 46
Boxer Mike Tyson is 43
Rock musician Tom Drummond (Better Than Ezra) is 40
Actor Brian Bloom is 39
Actor Brian Vincent is 39
Actress Monica Potter is 38
Actor Rick Gonzalez is 30
Actress Lizzy Caplan is 27
Rhythm-and-blues singer Fantasia (“American Idol”) is 25
Olympic gold medal swimmer Michael Phelps is 24