Today is Thursday, March 18, the 77th day of 2021 with 288 to follow.
The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, Neptune and Saturn. Evening stars are Mars and Uranus.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Pisces. They include John C. Calhoun, the first U.S. vice president to resign that office, in 1782; Grover Cleveland, 22nd and 24th president of the United States, in 1837; Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov in 1844; German engineer Rudolf Diesel, inventor of the engine that bears his name, in 1858; British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain in 1869; actor Edward Everett Horton in 1886; poet Wilfred Owen in 1893; winemaker Ernest Gallo in 1909; actor Peter Graves in 1926; author John Updike in 1932; country singer Charley Pride in 1934; former South African President F.W. de Klerk in 1936 (age 85); singer/songwriter Wilson Pickett in 1941; actor Brad Dourif in 1950 (age 71); Olympic gold medal-winning skier Ingemar Stenmark in 1956 (age 65); singer Irene Cara in 1959 (age 62); TV personality Mike Rowe in 1962 (age 59); actor/singer Vanessa Williams in 1963 (age 58); Olympic champion speed skater Bonnie Blair in 1964 (age 57); singer/actor Queen Latifah, born Dana Elaine Owens, in 1970 (age 51); comedian/actor Dane Cook in 1972 (age 49); actor Sutton Foster in 1975 (age 46); singer/songwriter Adam Levine in 1979 (age 42); actor Lily Collins in 1989 (age 32).
On this date in history:
In 1922, Mahatma Gandhi was sentenced to six years in prison for civil disobedience against the British rulers of India.
In 1925, the worst tornado in U.S. history roared through eastern Missouri, southern Illinois and southern Indiana, killing 695 people, injuring thousands of others and causing $17 million in property damage.
In 1937, a natural gas explosion at a public school in New London, Texas, killed almost 300 people, most of them children.
In 1962, France and Algeria signed a cease-fire agreement ending a seven-year civil war and bringing independence to the North African country.
In 1965, Soviet cosmonaut Alexey Leonov became the first person to walk in space.
In 1995, "I'm back." Superstar Michael Jordan announced he was returning to professional basketball and the Chicago Bulls after a 17-month break, during which he had tried a baseball career.
In 2002, a 13-year-old girl died two days after being struck in the head by a puck at a Columbus Blue Jackets-Calgary Flames game. The incident forced the National Hockey League to have teams install 18-foot nets behind all goals to protect spectators.
In 2003, on the eve of war with Iraq, the U.S. State Department listed 30 countries as members of a "coalition of the willing" supporting military intervention, but only the United States, Britain and Australia were known to be providing troops.
In 2005, doctors removed the feeding tube keeping Terri Schiavo alive after a wide-ranging fight over the brain-damaged Florida woman's care that involved U.S. President George Bush and Congress.
In 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama signed a jobs-stimulus measure into law. It provided $17.5 billion in tax cuts and other employer incentives and shifted $20 billion to boost transit programs.
In 2014, the U.S. State Department ordered Syria to close its embassy in Washington, D.C., and consulates in Michigan and Texas, and expelled all diplomats without U.S. citizenship or lawful permanent residency status.
In 2018, an Uber vehicle on autonomous mode struck and killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Ariz., the first fatal crash involving a self-driving car.
In 2020, U.S. President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau closed their border to travel to limit the spread of COVID-19.
A thought for the day: "Peace does not fare well where poverty and deprivation reign. It does not flourish where there is ignorance and a lack of education and information ... Racial, class and religious intolerance and prejudice are its mortal enemies." -- South African President F.W. de Klerk