UPI Almanac for Friday, May 9, 2014

An airliner crash in Poland, bridge collapse in Florida, soccer stampede in Ghana … on this date in history.
By United Press International  |  May 9, 2014 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Friday, May 9, the 129th day of 2014 with 236 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Taurus. They include abolitionist John Brown in 1800; Scottish novelist James Barrie, author of "Peter Pan," in 1860; Howard Carter, the British Egyptologist who discovered the tomb of Tutankhamen, in 1874; industrialist Henry J. Kaiser in 1882; Spanish philosopher Jose Ortega y Gasset in 1883; country singer Hank Snow in 1914; TV journalist Mike Wallace in 1918; tennis champion Richard "Pancho" Gonzales in 1928; English actors Albert Finney and Glenda Jackson, both in 1936 (age 78); TV producer and filmmaker James L. Brooks in 1940 (age 74); former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and pop singer Tommy Roe, both in 1942 (age 72); Rock and Roll Hall of Fame musician Richie Furay in 1944 (age 70); actor Candice Bergen in 1946 (age 68); singer/songwriter Billy Joel in 1949 (age 65); baseball Hall of Fame member Tony Gwynn in 1960 (age 54); and actor John Corbett in 1962 (age 52).

On this date in history:

In 1502, Christopher Columbus set sail from Spain on his fourth and final voyage to the New World.

In 1926, U.S. Navy Cmdr. Richard Byrd and Floyd Bennett were the first to fly over the North Pole.

In 1961, in a speech to TV executives at the National Association of Broadcasters convention, new Federal Communications Commission Chairman Newton Minow referred to television as "a vast wasteland."

In 1978, former Italian Prime Aldo Moro, who had been kidnapped by Red Brigade terrorists, was found shot to death in the back of a car in Rome.

In 1979, the United States and Soviet Union reached a basic accord on the SALT 2 nuclear arms treaty.

In 1980, a Liberian freighter rammed a bridge in Florida's Tampa Bay, collapsing part of the span and dropping 35 people to their deaths. (A new $240 million Sunshine Skybridge opened April 30, 1987.)

In 1987, a Polish airliner bound for New York crashed near Warsaw, killing 183 people.

In 2001, at least 123 people were killed during a stampede at a soccer match in Accra, Ghana.

In 2004, President Akhmad Kadyrov of Chechnya was assassinated in an explosion that also killed 31 other people at a stadium in Grozny where Russia's World War II victory was being celebrated. Chechen rebels claimed responsibility for the attack.

In 2009, Jacob Zuma, African National Congress leader, was sworn in as president of South Africa.

In 2011, thousands of citizens in Mexico City protested raging violence that bedeviled the country since the government launched its drug cartel crackdown and demanded more steps to protect the people.

In 2012, U.S. President Barack Obama said he had reversed his opposition to same-sex marriage.

In 2013, authorities in Pakistan said Taliban gunmen kidnapped Ali Haider Gilani, son of former Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani. (In April 2014, officials said the son was still a hostage.)

A thought for the day: "Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation." -- Walter Cronkite
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