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Today in History: And now for something completely different (thanks KERA!)

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Today in History

By The Associated Press

Today in History

Today is Friday, Oct. 5, the 278th day of 2018. There are 87 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Oct. 5, 1983, Solidarity founder Lech Walesa (lek vah-wen’-sah) was named winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

On this date:

In 1829, the 21st president of the United States, Chester Alan Arthur, was born in North Fairfield, Vermont.

In 1931, Clyde Pangborn and Hugh Herndon completed the first non-stop flight across the Pacific Ocean, arriving in Washington state some 41 hours after leaving Japan.

In 1947, President Harry S. Truman delivered the first televised White House address as he spoke on the world food crisis.

In 1953, Earl Warren was sworn in as the 14th chief justice of the United States, succeeding Fred M. Vinson.

In 1958, racially-desegregated Clinton High School in Clinton, Tennessee, was mostly leveled by an early morning bombing.

In 1969, the British TV comedy program “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” made its debut on BBC 1.

From KERA: This was the year Monty Python’s Flying Circus invaded America. KERA-TV, the public television station in Dallas, was the first station in the country to broadcast this unknown program on a Sunday evening in the Fall of 1974 to a very unsuspecting, post-Masterpiece Theatre audience. Almost instantly, the Monty Python’s Flying Circus phenomenon was born.


In 1984, the space shuttle Challenger blasted off from the Kennedy Space Center on an 8-day mission; the crew included Kathryn D. Sullivan, who became the first American woman to walk in space, and Marc Garneau, the first Canadian astronaut.

In 1988, Democrat Lloyd Bentsen lambasted Republican Dan Quayle during their vice presidential debate, telling Quayle, “Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy.”

In 1989, a jury in Charlotte, North Carolina, convicted former P-T-L evangelist Jim Bakker (BAY’-kur) of using his television show to defraud followers.

In 1999, two packed commuter trains collided near London’s Paddington Station, killing 31 people.

In 2001, tabloid photo editor Robert Stevens died from inhaled anthrax, the first of a series of anthrax cases in Florida, New York, New Jersey and Washington.most instantly, the Monty Python’s Flying Circus phenomenon was born.

In 2011, Apple founder Steve Jobs, 56, died in Palo Alto, California.

Ten years ago: Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin defended her claim that Barack Obama “pals around with terrorists,” referring to his association on a charity board a few years earlier with 1960s radical Bill Ayers. Obama accused John McCain’s campaign of trying to distract votes with “smears” rather than talking about substance.

Five years ago: In a stealthy seaside assault in Somalia and in a raid in Libya’s capital, U.S. military forces struck out against Islamic extremists who had carried out terrorist attacks in East Africa, snatching Abu Anas al-Libi, allegedly involved in the bombings of U.S. embassies 15 years earlier. (Al-Libi has since pleaded not guilty to the embassy bombings.) A monster truck went out of control at an “Extreme Aeroshow” in Chihuahua, Mexico, killing eight people and injuring ten times as many. Wladimir Klitschko (VLAD’-uh-meer KLICH’-koh) retained his WBA and IBF heavyweight titles, unanimously outpointing previously undefeated Alexander Povetkin in Moscow.

One year ago: Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein announced that he was taking a leave of absence from his company after a New York Times article detailed decades of alleged sexual harassment against women including actress Ashley Judd. The National Rifle Association and the White House expressed support for controls on “bump stock” devices like those that apparently aided the gunman behind the Las Vegas attack; the NRA later said it was opposed to an outright ban on the devices. California Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation extending protections for immigrants living in the United States illegally; police in California would be barred from asking people about their immigration status or taking part in federal immigration enforcement activities.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Glynis Johns is 95. College Football Hall of Fame coach Barry Switzer is 81. Rhythm-and-blues singer Arlene Smith (The Chantels) is 77. Singer-musician Steve Miller is 75. Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin, D-Md., is 75. Rock singer Brian Johnson (AC/DC) is 71. Blues musician Rick Estrin is 69. Actress Karen Allen is 67. Writer-producer-director Clive Barker is 66. Rock musician David Bryson (Counting Crows) is 64. Astrophysicist-author Neil deGrasse Tyson is 60. Memorial designer Maya Lin is 59. Actor Daniel Baldwin is 58. Rock singer-musician Dave Dederer is 54. Hockey Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux is 53. Actor Guy Pearce is 51. Actress Josie Bissett is 48. Singer-actress Heather Headley is 44. Pop-rock singer Colin Meloy (The Decemberists) is 44. Rock musician Brian Mashburn (Save Ferris) is 43. Actress Parminder Nagra (pahr-MIHN’-da NAH’-grah) is 43. Actor Scott Weinger is 43. Actress Kate Winslet is 43. Rock musician James Valentine (Maroon 5) is 40. Rock musician Paul Thomas (Good Charlotte) is 38. Actor Jesse Eisenberg is 35. TV personality Nicky Hilton is 35. Actress Azure Parsons is 34. Rhythm-and-blues singer Brooke Valentine is 33. Actor Kevin Bigley is 32. Actor Joshua Logan Moore is 24. Actor Jacob Tremblay is 12.

Thought for Today: “The usefulness of a meeting is in inverse proportion to the attendance.” — Lane Kirkland, American labor leader (1922-1999).

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