The Almanac

By United Press International  |  Aug. 9, 2002 at 3:00 AM
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Today is Friday, Aug. 9, the 221st day of 2002 with 144 to follow.

The moon is waxing toward a new phase. The morning stars are Jupiter, Uranus, Saturn. The evening stars are Mars. Mercury, Venus, Neptune, Pluto.

Those born on this day are under the sign of Cancer. They include English author and angler Izaak Walton in 1593; pioneer Swiss child psychologist Jean Piaget in 1896;

English actor/playwright Robert Shaw in 1927; Australian tennis star Rod Laver in 1938 (age 64); comedian David Steinberg in 1942 (age 60); actor Sam Elliot in 1944 (age 58); heavyweight boxer Ken Norton in 1945 (age 57); actresses Melanie Griffith in 1957 (age 45) and Amanda Bearse ("Married...With Children") in 1958 (age 44); pop singer Whitney Houston in 1963 (age 39); and actress Gillian Anderson ("The X-Files") in 1968 (age 34).

On this date in history:

In 480 B.C., after one of history's most famous battles, Persian forces finally overran the heavily outnumbered Spartan defenders of the narrow pass at Thermopylae in Greece.

In 1936, Jesse Owens won his fourth Olympic gold medal in Berlin.

In 1945, a U.S. B-29 bomber dropped an atomic bomb nicknamed "Fat Man" on the Japanese city of Nagasaki, at 11:02 a.m. local time.

In 1969, actress Sharon Tate and four other people were slain by the followers of Charles Manson in the first of two nights of bizarre killings.

In 1974, President Nixon's resignation became effective at noon and Vice President Ford was sworn in as the nation's 38th chief executive.

In 1991, Vietnamese Prime Minister Do Muoi resigned. He was succeeded by Vo Van Kiet, who vowed to transform Vietnam into a market economy.

In 1992, the largest Summer Olympic Games in history ended in Barcelona, Spain.

In 1994, Democratic National Committee chairman David Wilhelm announced he would resign following the November elections.

In 1995, the 50th anniversary of the U.S. atomic bombing of Nagasaki was observed in the Japanese city.

In 1996, a Florida jury ordered $750,000 be paid to lung cancer patient Gracy Carter, whose suit against the maker of Lucky Strikes was based on company memos indicating knowledge of tobacco's addictiveness when the company said otherwise in public.

Also in 1996, an ill-looking Boris Yeltsin attended a brief swearing-in ceremony for his new term as president of Russia.

In 1997, Elvis Week began in Memphis as fans commemorated the 20th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley.

A thought for the day: Elvis Presley said, "I wouldn't be honest with you if I said I wasn't ashamed of some of the movies, and the songs I've had to sing in them."

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