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Saturday, June 26, 2004


Today is Saturday, June 26th.

The 178th day of 2004.

There are 188 days left in the year.


Today's Highlight in History:

On June 26, 1963, President Kennedy visited West Berlin, where he was greeted by more than a million of the divided city's residents. In a speech, he made his famous declaration: "Ich bin ein Berliner" In English, the intended translation is "I am a Berliner," a phrase Kennedy hoped would encourage the isolated city. In fact, a "Berliner" is local slang for something like a donut, so he was saying "I Am a Jelly Doughnut", but everyone seemed to understand what the President meant. The pun is still famous in Germany, and many comics will still use the line.


On this date:

In 1483, In a royal drama later told by Shakespeare, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, takes the crown of England as Richard III, following the death of King Edward IV and the imprisonment of the young Edward V.

In 1498, The toothbrush is invented in China.

In 1804, The Lewis and Clark Expedition reached the mouth of the Kansas River after completing a westward trek of nearly 400 river miles.

In 1819, The Bicycle was patented by William Clarkson Jr. of New York.

In 1858, China was forced to open its port cities to foreigners by the threat of military force by European ships.

In 1870, The first section of Atlantic City, New Jersey's Boardwalk was opened to the public.

In 1894, The first U.S. patent for a gasoline-driven automobile is issued to Karl Benz of Germany.

In 1894, Railroad workers led by Eugene V. Debs begin a national strike in sympathy with employees at the Pullman railcar company. Later, troops sent by President Grover Cleveland put a violent end to the strike.

In 1900, A commission that included Dr. Walter Reed began the fight against the deadly disease yellow fever.

In 1904, Actor/Director Peter Lorre (Laszlo Loewenstein) was born in Hungary. He died March 23, 1964 at age 59.

In 1909, Elvis Presley's manager "Colonel" Tom Parker was born. He died January 21, 1997 at age87.

In 1912, The Oreo cookie was born by Nabisco.

In 1914, Olympic medalist/Golfer/Actress Mildred "Babe" Didrikson Zaharias was born. Probably the greatest female athlete of the 20th century, she died September 27, 1956 at age 42.

In 1917, The first troops of the American Expeditionary Force arrived in France during World War I.

In 1919, The first issue of the New York "Daily News" was published, under the name "The Illustrated Daily News."

In 1924, The "Ziegfeld Follies" opens on Broadway.

In 1925, The Gold Rush, Charlie Chaplin's epic comedy set in Alaska, opens. A critical and popular success, it is immediately acclaimed as a landmark in film history.

In 1942, The Grumman F6F Hellcat fighter was flown for the first time.

In 1944, The Republican national convention opened in Chicago with a keynote speech by California Governor Earl Warren.

In 1945, The charter of the United Nations was signed by 50 countries in San Francisco.

In 1959, President Eisenhower joined Britain's Queen Elizabeth II in ceremonies officially opening the St. Lawrence Seaway.

In 1959, CBS journalist Edward R. Murrow interviewed Lee Remick. It was his 500th and final guest on "Person to Person."

In 1964, The Beatles release "A Hard Day's Night" album

In 1968, Chief U.S. Justice Earl Warren announced his intention to resign.

In 1972, The Air Force unveils the new F-15 jet fighter.

In 1977, 42 people were killed when a fire sent toxic smoke pouring through the Maury County Jail in Columbia, Tenn.

In 1981, We take you now to Mountain Home, Idaho and a supermarket frequented by Virginia Campbell. On this day, Mrs. Campbell took her clipped coupons and rebates and bought some groceries. A lot of them. Checkers totaled some $24,460 worth, in fact! How much did Campbell end up paying with all of those coupons and rebates? Only 67 cents! Reports indicated that she would have received a REFUND of $12.97, but she decided to get film and flashbulbs after the bill was totaled.

In 1983, The Soviet Union announced that 15 Pentecostalists would be allowed to leave the country, including five who had taken refuge in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow for nearly five years.

In 1987, Supreme Court Justice Lewis F. Powell Jr. announced his retirement, leaving a vacancy that was filled by Anthony M. Kennedy.

In 1989, Canada updates coins with a new potrait of the Queen.

In 1989, In a pair of decisions, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty may be imposed for murderers who committed their crimes as young as 16, and for mentally retarded killers.

In 1990, President Bush, who had campaigned for office on a pledge of "no new taxes," conceded that tax increases would have to be included in any deficit-reduction package worked out with congressional negotiators.

In 1992, Los Angeles Police Chief Daryl Gates, the target of public wrath for the Rodney King beating, stepped down from office. Willie L. Williams was appointed the new C.O.P.

In 1993, President Clinton announced the U.S. had launched Tomahawk cruise missiles against Iraqi targets, Iraqi intelligence headquartes, because of "compelling evidence" Iraq had plotted to assassinate former President Bush. 6 people were killed.

In 1996, The Supreme Court ordered the Virginia Military Academy to admit women or forgo state support.

In 1997, The U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Communications Decency Act of 1996 that made it illegal to distribute indecent material on the Internet.

In 1998, The Supreme Court issued a landmark sexual harassment ruling, putting employers on notice that they can be held responsible for supervisors' misconduct even if they knew nothing about it.

In 2000, The Human Genome Project and Celera Genomics Corp. jointly announced that they had created a working draft of the human genome.

In 2002, WorldCom Inc., the nation's No. 2 long-distance company, slid toward bankruptcy after disclosing what could be the biggest case of crooked accounting in U.S. history.

Ten years ago (1994):

Hundreds of thousands of homosexuals gathered in New York City to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Stonewall Inn riot, considered the birth of the gay rights movement.

An Israeli commission found that a Jewish settler had acted alone when he shot and killed 29 Muslims in a Hebron mosque, rejecting Palestinian claims of a conspiracy.

104 degrees F (40 degrees C) at Denver Colorado.

107 degrees F (41.6 degrees C) at Albuquerque New Mexico.

112 degrees F (44.4 degrees C) at El Paso Texas.

122 degrees F (50 degrees C) at Laughlin Nevada.

126 degrees F (52.2 degrees C) in Death Valley Calif.

Five years ago (1999):

An advance contingent of Russian troops flew into Kosovo to help reopen a strategic airport and join an uneasy alliance with NATO peacekeepers.

One year ago (2003):

The Supreme Court, in a 6-3 decision, struck down state bans on gay sex.

A jury in Fort Worth, Texas, convicted former nurse's aide Chante Mallard of murder for hitting a homeless man with her car, driving home with his mangled body jammed in the windshield and leaving him to die in her garage.

Strom Thurmond, the longest-serving senator in U.S. history, died in Edgefield, S.C., at age 100. He was born December 5, 1902.

Sir Denis Thatcher, husband of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, died in London at age 88.


Today's Birthdays:

Actress Eleanor Parker is 82.

Jazz musician-film composer Dave Grusin is 70.

Actor Josef Sommer is 70.

Singer Billy Davis Jr. (The Fifth Dimension) is 64.

Singer Georgie Fame is 61.

Actor Clive Francis is 58.

Actor Robert Davi is 50.

Singer-musician Mick Jones is 49.

Actor Gedde Watanabe is 49.

Rock singer Chris Isaak is 48.

Rock singer Patty Smyth is 47.

Singer Terri Nunn (Berlin) is 43.

Actor Mark McKinney is 42.

Rock singer Harriet Wheeler (The Sundays) is 41.

Rock musician Colin Greenwood (Radiohead) is 35.

Actor Sean Hayes is 34.

Actor Matt Letscher is 34.

Actor Chris O'Donnell is 34.

Country singer Gretchen Wilson is 30.

Actor-musician Jason Schwartzman is 24.

Actress Kaitlin Cullum is 18.


Thought for Today:

"When a diplomat says yes, he means perhaps; when he says perhaps, he means no; when he says no, he is no diplomat." -

- Anonymous.