Today’s Highlight in History:
On Nov. 29, 1929, Navy Lt. Cmdr. Richard E. Byrd, pilot Bernt Balchen, radio operator Harold June and photographer Ashley McKinney made the first airplane flight over the South Pole.
On this date:
In 1864, a Colorado militia killed at least 150 peaceful Cheyenne Indians in the Sand Creek Massacre.
In 1910, British explorer Robert F. Scott’s ship Terra Nova set sail from New Zealand, carrying Scott’s expedition on its ultimately futile — as well as fatal — race to reach the South Pole first.
In 1924, Italian composer Giacomo Puccini died in Brussels before he could complete his opera “Turandot.” (It was finished by Franco Alfano.)
In 1952, President-elect Dwight D. Eisenhower secretly left on a trip to Korea, keeping his campaign promise to assess the ongoing conflict first-hand.
In 1961, Enos the chimp was launched from Cape Canaveral aboard the Mercury-Atlas 5 spacecraft, which orbited earth twice before returning.
In 1963, President Johnson named a commission headed by Earl Warren to investigate the assassination of President Kennedy.
In 1981, film star Natalie Wood drowned in a boating accident off Santa Catalina Island, California, at age 43.
In 1987, a Korean Air 707 jetliner en route from Abu Dhabi to Bangkok was destroyed by a bomb planted by North Korean agents with the loss of all 115 people aboard.
In 2000, bracing the public for more legal wrangling, Vice President Al Gore said in a series of TV interviews that he was prepared to contest the Florida presidential vote until “the middle of December.”
In 2001, George Harrison, the “quiet Beatle,” died in Los Angeles following a battle with cancer; he was 58.
In 2008, Indian commandos killed the last remaining gunmen holed up at a luxury Mumbai hotel, ending a 60-hour rampage through India’s financial capital by suspected Pakistani-based militants that killed 166 people.
In 2009, a gunman shot and killed four Lakewood, Washington, police officers at a coffee shop (suspect Maurice Clemmons was shot to death by a Seattle police officer two days later). Iran approved plans to build 10 industrial scale uranium enrichment facilities in defiance of U.N. demands it halt enrichment.
Ten years ago: An Afghan border policeman killed six American servicemen during a training mission in a remote area near the Pakistani border. Iran’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (ah-muh-DEE’-neh-zhahd), admitted for the first time that a computer worm had affected centrifuges in Iran’s uranium enrichment program. Climate negotiators began a two-week conference in Cancun. Former New York Congressman Stephen J. Solarz, 70, died in Washington, D.C.
Five years ago: President Barack Obama, arriving in Paris late at night for a climate conference, briefly visited the Bataclan, the concert hall that was the scene of the worst of France’s terror attacks 16 days earlier. Pope Francis visited the conflict-wracked Central African Republic, where he urged the country’s Christian and Muslim factions to lay down their weapons and instead arm themselves with peace and forgiveness. Andy Murray gave Britain its first Davis Cup title in 79 years when he beat Belgium’s David Goffin 6-3, 7-5, 6-3 in the first of reverse singles.
One year ago: Usman Khan, who’d been released from prison early after a conviction on terrorism charges, stabbed two people to death and wounded three others next to London Bridge before being shot and killed by police. Fewer shoppers visited stores than on past Black Fridays, but they made up for it with a Black Friday record of $7.4 billion in online transactions. Bill Peters resigned as coach of the NHL’s Calgary Flames after it was disclosed he had directed racist slurs at a Nigerian-born player in the minors a decade earlier, and had kicked and punched players behind the bench during his recent time with Carolina. The NFL suspended Arizona Cardinals cornerback Josh Shaw through at least the end of the 2020 season for betting on NFL games on multiple occasions during the 2019 season. Delmer Joel Ramirez Palma, a construction worker who’d been hurt in the October collapse of the Hard Rock Hotel construction site in New Orleans, was deported to his native Honduras. Former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone died at the age of 101.
Today’s Birthdays: Hall of Fame sportscaster Vin Scully is 93. Blues singer-musician John Mayall is 87. Actor Diane Ladd is 85. Songwriter Mark James is 80. Composer-musician Chuck Mangione is 80. Country singer Jody Miller is 79.
Pop singer-musician Felix Cavaliere (The Rascals) is 78. Former Olympic skier Suzy Chaffee is 74. Actor Jeff Fahey is 68. Movie director Joel Coen is 66. Actor-comedian-celebrity judge Howie Mandel is 65. Former Homeland Security Director Janet Napolitano (neh-pahl-ih-TAN’-oh) is 63. Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is 61. Actor Cathy Moriarty is 60. Actor Kim Delaney is 59. Actor Tom Sizemore is 59. Actor Andrew McCarthy is 58. Actor Don Cheadle is 56. Actor-producer Neill Barry is 55. Pop singer Jonathan Knight (New Kids on the Block) is 52. Rock musician Martin Carr (Boo Radleys) is 52. Actor Jennifer Elise Cox is 51. Baseball Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera is 51. Actor Larry Joe Campbell is 50. Rock musician Frank Delgado (Deftones) is 50. Actor Paola Turbay is 50. Contemporary Christian singer Crowder is 49. Actor Gena Lee Nolin is 49. Actor Brian Baumgartner is 48. Actor Julian Ovenden is 45. Actor Anna (AH’-nuh) Faris is 44. Gospel singer James Fortune is 43. Actor Lauren German is 42. Rapper The Game is 41. Actor Janina Gavankar is 40. Rock musician Ringo Garza is 39. Actor-comedian John Milhiser is 39. Actor Lucas Black is 38. Actor Diego Boneta is 30. Actor Lovie Simone (TV: “Greenleaf”) is 22.