Today in History

Published 12:01 am Saturday, July 28, 2018

Today is Saturday, July 28, the 209th day of 2018. There are 156 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On July 28, 1945, the U.S. Senate ratified the United Nations Charter by a vote of 89-2.

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On this date:

In 1794, Maximilien Robespierre, a leading figure of the French Revolution, was sent to the guillotine.

In 1914, World War I began as Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia.

In 1932, federal troops forcibly dispersed the so-called “Bonus Army” of World War I veterans who had gathered in Washington to demand payments they weren’t scheduled to receive until 1945.

In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt announced the end of coffee rationing, which had limited people to one pound of coffee every five weeks since it began in Nov. 1942.

In 1945, a U.S. Army bomber crashed into the 79th floor of New York’s Empire State Building, killing 14 people.

In 1959, in preparation for statehood, Hawaiians voted to send the first Chinese-American, Republican Hiram L. Fong, to the U.S. Senate and the first Japanese-American, Democrat Daniel K. Inouye, to the U.S. House of Representatives.

In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson announced he was increasing the number of American troops in South Vietnam from 75,000 to 125,000 “almost immediately.”

In 1976, an earthquake devastated northern China, killing at least 242,000 people, according to an official estimate.

In 1984, the Los Angeles Summer Olympics opened.

In 1989, Israeli commandos abducted a pro-Iranian Shiite (SHEE’-eyet) Muslim cleric, Sheik Abdul-Karim Obeid (AHB’-dool kah-REEM’ oh-BAYD’), from his home in south Lebanon. (He was released in January 2004 as part of a prisoner swap.)

In 1995, a jury in Union, South Carolina, rejected the death penalty for Susan Smith, sentencing her to life in prison for drowning her two young sons (Smith will be eligible for parole in 2024).

In 2002, nine coal miners trapped in the flooded Quecreek (KYOO’-kreek) Mine in Somerset, Pennsylvania, were rescued after 77 hours underground.

Ten years ago: President Bush received Pakistan’s new prime minister, Yousuf Raza Gilani (gee-LAH’-nee), at the White House, praising him as a reliable partner in confronting terrorism. Four suicide bombers believed to be women struck a Shiite pilgrimage in Baghdad and a Kurdish protest rally in northern Iraq, killing at least 57 people and wounding nearly 300.

Five years ago: Pope Francis’ historic trip to his home continent of South America ended after a marathon week in Brazil. In southern Italy, 39 people were killed when a tour bus plunged into a ravine. An armed thief stole a $136 million diamond collection from a jewelry show at the Carlton International Hotel in Cannes, France. Actress-singer Eileen Brennan, 80, died in Burbank, California.

One year ago: The Senate voted 51-49 to reject Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s last-ditch effort to dismantle President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul with a trimmed-down bill. John McCain, who was about to begin radiation and chemotherapy treatments for a brain tumor, joined two other GOP senators in voting “no” on the repeal effort. President Donald Trump announced he was appointing Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly to be his chief of staff. Defrocked priest Paul Shanley, who was at the center of Boston’s Roman Catholic clergy sex abuse scandal, was released from prison at the age of 86. British baby Charlie Gard died, a week shy of his first birthday; his parents had fought for the right to take him to the United States for an experimental medical treatment for a rare genetic disease that left him brain-damaged but doctors opposed the request, saying the treatment wouldn’t help him and might cause him to suffer.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor Darryl Hickman is 87. Ballet dancer-choreographer Jacques d’Amboise is 84. Musical conductor Riccardo Muti is 77. Former Senator and NBA Hall of Famer Bill Bradley is 75. “Garfield” creator Jim Davis is 73. Singer Jonathan Edwards is 72. Actress Linda Kelsey is 72. TV producer Dick Ebersol is 71. Actress Sally Struthers is 71. Actress Georgia Engel is 70. Rock musician Simon Kirke (Bad Company) is 69. Rock musician Steve Morse (Deep Purple) is 64. Former CBS anchorman Scott Pelley is 61. Alt-country-rock musician Marc Perlman is 57. Actor Michael Hayden is 55. Actress Lori Loughlin is 54. Jazz musician-producer Delfeayo Marsalis is 53. Former hockey player turned general manager Garth Snow is 49. Actress Elizabeth Berkley is 46. Singer Afroman is 44. Country musician Todd Anderson (Heartland) is 43. Rock singer Jacoby Shaddix (Papa Roach) is 42. Country singer Carly Goodwin is 37. Actor Jon Michael Hill is 33. Actor Dustin Milligan is 33. Actor Nolan Gerard Funk is 32. Rapper Soulja Boy is 28. Pop/rock singer Cher Lloyd (TV: “The X Factor”) is 25.