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UPI Almanac for Friday, May 8, 2020

On May 8, 1945, President Harry S. Truman officially declared V-E Day, the end of World War II in Europe.

By United Press International
People jam Piccadilly Circus during celebration of V-E Day on May 8, 1945, in London. UPI File Photo
1 of 2 | People jam Piccadilly Circus during celebration of V-E Day on May 8, 1945, in London. UPI File Photo

Today is Friday, May 8, the 129th day of 2020 with 237 to follow.

The moon is waning. Morning stars are Jupiter, Mars, Neptune and Saturn. Evening stars are Mercury and Venus.

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Those born on this date are under the sign of Taurus. They include Jean-Henri Dunant, Swiss founder of the Red Cross Society/co-founder of the Young Men's Christian Association, in 1828; Harry Truman, 33rd president of the United States, in 1884; Nobel Prize-winning Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek in 1899; filmmaker Roberto Rossellini in 1906; pianist Mary Lou Williams in 1910; blues guitarist Robert Johnson in 1911; author/broadcaster/naturalist David Attenborough in 1926 (age 94); comedian Don Rickles in 1926; former heavyweight boxing champion Sonny Liston in 1932; actor/singer Rick Nelson in 1940; author Peter Benchley in 1940; singer Toni Tennille in 1940 (age 80); English rock singer Gary Glitter, born Paul Francis Gadd, in 1944 (age 76); musician Alex Van Halen in 1953 (age 67); actor David Keith in 1954 (age 66); actor Stephen Furst in 1954; New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in 1961 (age 59); actor Melissa Gilbert in 1964 (age 56); Spanish singer Enrique Iglesias in 1975 (age 45); actor Stephen Amell in 1981 (age 39); actor Elyes Gabel in 1983 (age 37).

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On this date in history:

In 1541, Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto becomes the first European colonizer to discover the Mississippi River.

In 1909, President William Howard Taft announced he would continue the conservation policies put in place by his predecessor, President Theodore Roosevelt.

In 1915, reports issued by The Admiralty (Royal Navy) indicated that 703 of the passengers and crew of RMS Lusitania had been rescued, with more than 1,300 believed lost in the previous day's U-boat attack.

In 1945, President Harry S. Truman officially declared V-E Day, the end of World War II in Europe.

In 1970, Let It Be, The Beatles' final original album, was released. In 2015, Spotify said the song "Let It Be" was the No. 2 most-played Beatles song on the streaming service.

In 1984, the Soviet Union declared it wouldn't take part in the Los Angeles Olympics, citing fears about security for its athletes. The decision came four years after the United States team boycotted the Games in Moscow.

In 1988, France re-elected socialist Francois Mitterrand as president, defeating conservative Prime Minister Jacques Chirac.

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In 1996, South Africa voted for a new Constitution. Its bill of rights included the right to food, housing and education.

In 2003, dozens of people were reported killed after the rear door of a cargo jet suddenly opened at 33,000 feet over the Democratic Republic of the Congo and passengers were sucked out of the plane. Many occupants managed to stay in the aircraft until it landed at an airport.

In 2006, Lillian Asplund, the last known U.S. survivor of the 1912 sinking of the Titanic, died of natural causes at her Shrewsbury, Mass., home. She was 99.

In 2007, Northern Ireland installed a new power-sharing government linking Catholic and Protestant parties.

In 2011, a senior al-Qaida suspect being moved from his Baghdad cell for questioning grabbed a jailer's gun and set off a 6-hour battle that left at least 14 people dead, including the inmate.

In 2016, Londoners elected Sadiq Khan as the first Muslim mayor in the capital city's history.

In 2018, a 78-foot wave was observed off the coast of Campbell Island, New Zealand, the largest wave ever recorded in the Southern Hemisphere.

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In 2019, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani declared the country would partially stop complying with the nuclear deal it signed in 2015 with six other nations.


A thought for the day: "I never did give anybody hell. I just told the truth and they thought it was hell." -- U.S. President Harry S. Truman

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