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A Blast from the Past

By United Press International   |   May 7, 2003 at 3:00 AM   |   Comments

Today is May 7.


It was on this date in 1915 -- as World War 1 raged on in Europe -- that the British passenger liner Lusitania, en route from New York to Liverpool, was torpedoed by a German U-boat off the coast of Ireland. It sank within minutes. Nearly 1,200 people, including 124 Americans, were killed.

Washington protested, but Germany -- which had issued warnings in advance -- pointed to Lusitania's cargo, which included ammunition for Britain. The United States decided against declaring war for the time being.


On this date in 1945 Gen. Dwight Eisenhower accepted the unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany from German Gen. Alfred Jodl. The documents making it all official were signed the next day at Eisenhower's headquarters in Reims.


Ten years after the Vietnam War ended, New York City honored Vietnam veterans with a huge ticker tape parade on this date in 1985.


A 21-year-old Wisconsin college student, Luke John Heider, was arrested on this date in 2002 for planting pipebombs in or near rural mailboxes. Bombs were found at nearly two dozen locations in five states; six people were hurt when six of the bombs exploded.


Rep. Stewart McKinney, R-Conn., died on this date in 1987 at age 56. He was the first known congressional member to have AIDS.


On this date in 1993, a Florida teenager was identified as the sixth patient to be infected with the AIDS virus by dentist Dr. David Acer. Previously, it hadn't been thought that a health professional could transmit the virus to a patient via medical or dental treatments.


And an Ottawa Indian chief named Pontiac led a major uprising against the British at Detroit on this date in 1763. Many, many years later, they named a car after him.


We now return you to the present, already in progress.

© 2003 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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