The almanac

By United Press International
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Today is Sunday, March 23, the 82nd day of 2014 with 283 to follow.

The moon is waning. The morning stars are Mars, Mercury, Neptune, Saturn and Venus. The evening stars are Jupiter and Uranus.


Those born on this date were under the sign of Aries. They include pirate Capt. William Kidd in 1645; culinary expert Fannie Farmer in 1857; Czech writer Josef Capek in 1887; psychoanalyst Erich Fromm in 1900; actor Joan Crawford in 1905; Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa in 1910; rocket scientist Wernher von Braun in 1912; Roger Bannister, the first person to run the mile in under 4 minutes, in 1929 (age 85); land speed racing pioneer Craig Breedlove in 1937 (age 77); former Atlanta Mayor Maynard Jackson Jr. in 1938; musicians Ric Ocasek in 1949 (age 65) and Chaka Khan in 1953 (age 61); television analyst and former NFL player Ron Jaworski in 1951 (age 63); author Kim Stanley Robinson in 1952 (age 62); actors Amanda Plummer in 1957 (age 57) and Keri Russell in 1976 (age 38); and gossip blogger Perez Hilton in 1978 (age 36).


On this date in history:

In 1775, in a speech supporting the arming of the Virginia militia, Patrick Henry declared, "Give me liberty or give me death."

In 1965, Astronauts Gus Grissom and John Young were launched in Gemini 3, the first U.S. two-man crew in space.

In 1966, Pope Paul VI met Britain's archbishop of Canterbury at the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, the first meeting between the heads of the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches in 400 years.

In 1983, the world's first recipient of a permanent artificial heart, Barney Clark of Seattle, died in a Salt Lake City hospital.

In 1985, the United States completed the secret air evacuation of 800 Ethiopian Jews to Israel.

In 1989, Dick Clark retired from hosting the TV show "American Bandstand" after 33 years.

In 1996, Taiwan elected Lee Teng-hui in the island's first direct presidential election.

In 1998, "Titanic" won 11 Academy Awards, tying the record total won by "Ben-Hur" in 1959.

In 2001, the Russian space station Mir was brought down in the Pacific Ocean near Fiji after more than 15 years in orbit.


In 2004, NASA said findings on Mars suggest a sea once covered part of the planet.

In 2005, Iraqi forces attacked a training camp for suspected insurgents west of Baghdad, killing 80 gunmen in what officials called one of the largest operations to stamp out terrorism.

In 2008, officials said the U.S. military death toll in the Iraq war, in its sixth year, climbed to more than 4,000 with the deaths of four soldiers in Baghdad.

In 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama signed a landmark healthcare reform bill into law. The legislation was designed to extend health insurance to about 32 million Americans over a 10-year period.

In 2013, wintry weather across the United Kingdom closed roads, airports, schools and events and knocked out electrical power for tens of thousands of homes and businesses.

A thought for the day: "The school is the last expenditure upon which America should be willing to economize." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

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