Today in History – Sunday, May 28, 2017


Today is Sunday, May 28, the 148th day of 2017. There are 217 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On May 28, 1977, 165 people were killed when fire raced through the Beverly Hills Supper Club in Southgate, Kentucky. (Investigators cited faulty electrical wiring, fire safety code violations and overcrowding as reasons for the disaster.)

On this date:

In 1533, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Cranmer, declared the marriage of England’s King Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn valid.

In 1892, the Sierra Club was organized in San Francisco.

In 1912, the Senate Commerce Committee issued its report on the Titanic disaster that cited a “state of absolute unpreparedness,” improperly tested safety equipment and an “indifference to danger” as some of the causes of an “unnecessary tragedy.”

In 1929, the first all-color talking picture, “On with the Show!” produced by Warner Bros., opened in New York.

In 1934, the Dionne quintuplets — Annette, Cecile, Emilie, Marie and Yvonne — were born to Elzire Dionne at the family farm in Ontario, Canada.

In 1937, President Franklin D. Roosevelt pushed a button in Washington signaling that vehicular traffic could begin crossing the just-opened Golden Gate Bridge in California. Neville Chamberlain became prime minister of Britain. In Nazi Germany, Volkswagen was founded by the German Labour Front for the purpose of creating a “people’s car.”

In 1940, during World War II, the Belgian army surrendered to invading German forces.

In 1945, the novel “Brideshead Revisited” by Evelyn Waugh was published in London by Chapman & Hall.

In 1957, National League owners gave permission for the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Giants baseball teams to move to Los Angeles and San Francisco.

In 1961, Amnesty International had its beginnings with the publication of an article in the British newspaper The Observer, “The Forgotten Prisoners.”

In 1987, to the embarrassment of Soviet officials, Mathias Rust (mah-TEE’-uhs rust), a young West German pilot, landed a private plane in Moscow’s Red Square without authorization. (Rust was freed by the Soviets the following year.)

In 1998, comic actor Phil Hartman of “Saturday Night Live” and “NewsRadio” fame was shot to death at his home in Encino, California, by his wife, Brynn, who then killed herself.

Ten years ago: The United States and Iran broke a 27-year diplomatic freeze with a four-hour meeting in Baghdad about Iraqi security. President George W. Bush, during a Memorial Day visit to Arlington National Cemetery, honored U.S. troops who had fought and died for freedom and expressed his steely resolve to succeed in the war in Iraq. Miss Japan Rita Mori was crowned Miss Universe 2007 at the pageant in Mexico City.

Five years ago: President Barack Obama paid tribute on Memorial Day to the men and women who died defending America; speaking at the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, Obama pointed to Vietnam veterans as an under-appreciated and sometimes maligned group of war heroes. Nineteen people, including 13 children, were killed in a mall fire in Doha, Qatar.

One year ago: A 3-year-old boy fell into a gorilla enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo; he was rescued by a team that shot to death a 400-pound gorilla named Harambe after the rescuers concluded that the boy’s life was at stake, a decision which led to mourning and criticism around the globe. New Orleans Pelicans guard Bryce Dejean-Jones was shot to death by an apartment resident after kicking down the door of what he mistakenly thought was his girlfriend’s flat in Dallas. Mexican soccer star Alan Pulido was abducted by armed men after leaving a party near Ciudad Victoria; he managed to escape his kidnappers a day later.

Today’s Birthdays: Rockabilly singer-musician Sonny Burgess is 88. Actress Carroll Baker is 86. Producer-director Irwin Winkler is 86. Actor John Karlen is 84. Basketball Hall-of-Famer Jerry West is 79. Former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani is 73. Singer Gladys Knight is 73. Actress-director Sondra Locke is 73. Singer Billy Vera is 73. Actor Jean-Pierre Leaud is 73. Singer John Fogerty is 72. Country musician Jerry Douglas (Alison Krauss and Union Station) is 61. Actor Louis Mustillo is 59. U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford, R-S.C.., is 57. Actor Brandon Cruz (TV: “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father”) is 55. Country singer Phil Vassar is 53. Actress Christa Miller is 53. Singer-musician Chris Ballew (Presidents of the USA) is 52. Rapper Chubb Rock is 49. Singer Kylie Minogue (KY’-lee mihn-OHG’) is 49. Actor Justin Kirk is 48. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is 46. Olympic gold medal figure skater Ekaterina Gordeeva is 46. Television personality Elisabeth Hasselbeck is 40. Actor Jake Johnson is 39. Actor Jesse Bradford is 38. Actress Monica Keena is 38. Actress Alexa Davalos is 35. Actress Megalyn Echikunwoke (eh-cheek-uh-WALK’-ay) is 35. Pop singer Colbie Caillat (kal-LAY’) is 32. Actress Carey Mulligan is 32. Actor Joseph Cross is 31.

Thought for Today: “Intelligence rules the world, ignorance carries the burden.” — Marcus Garvey, Jamaican black nationalist (1887-1940).

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.