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UPI Almanac for Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021

On Dec. 5, 2014, NASA successfully launched its Orion spacecraft, its hope for the future of manned space travel and an eventual trip to Mars.

By United Press International
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UPI Almanac for Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021
A United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket launches NASA's Orion Spacecraft at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, on December 5, 2014. File Photo by Joe Marino-Bill Cantrell/UPI | License Photo

Today is Sunday, Dec. 5, the 339th day of 2021, with 26 to follow.

The moon is waxing. Morning stars are Mars and Uranus. Evening stars are Jupiter, Neptune, Saturn, Uranus and Venus.

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Those born on this date are under the sign of Sagittarius. They include Pope Julius II in 1443; Martin Van Buren, eighth president of the United States, in 1782; poet Christina Rossetti in 1830; U.S. Army Gen. George Custer in 1839; film director Fritz Lang in 1890; German physicist Werner Heisenberg in 1901; Walt Disney in 1901; U.S. Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., in 1902; film director Otto Preminger in 1905; Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej in 1927; Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member Little Richard, born Richard Penniman, in 1932; author Joan Didion in 1934 (age 87); writer Calvin Trillin in 1935 (age 86); songwriter J.J. Cale 1938; opera tenor Jose Carreras in 1946 (age 75); football Hall of Fame member Jim Plunkett in 1947 (age 74); comedian/actress Margaret Cho in 1968 (age 53); actor Catherine Tate in 1969 (age 52); actor Kali Rocha in 1971 (age 50); actor Paula Patton in 1975 (age 46); actor Lauren London in 1984 (age 37); actor Frankie Muniz in 1985 (age 36).

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On this date in history:

RELATED UPI Archives: NASA successfully launches test of new Orion capsule abort system

In 1776, the first scholastic fraternity in America, Phi Beta Kappa, was organized at William and Mary College in Virginia.

In 1848, U.S. President James Polk confirmed the discovery of gold in California, leading to the "gold rush" of 1848 and '49.

In 1933, prohibition of liquor in the United States was repealed when Utah became the 36th state to ratify the 21st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

RELATED UPI Archives: NASA unveils new spacesuits for exploration of moon, Mars

In 1945, five U.S. Navy Avenger torpedo-bombers disappeared on a routine flight in the area of the Atlantic known as the Bermuda Triangle. Fourteen airmen on the planes were lost and 13 others in a search plane killed.

In 1955, in one of the early civil rights actions in the South, African Americans declared a boycott of city buses in Montgomery, Ala., demanding seating on an equal basis with white people. The boycott was prompted by the arrest of Rosa Parks, a black woman who refused to give up her bus seat to a white man.

In 1988, a UPI poll of U.S. newspaper and broadcast editors named President-elect George H.W. Bush and incoming first lady Barbara Bush as male and female newsmakers of the year.

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In 1993, Rafael Caldera Rodriguez was elected president of Venezuela.

In 2001, factions in war-shaken Afghanistan agreed on an interim government, naming Hamid Karzai as their new leader.

In 2002, U.S. Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., celebrated his 100th birthday on Capitol Hill. Thurmond, who retired the following year, had served in the Senate since 1954, making him both the longest-serving and oldest member of Congress. He died June 27, 2003.

In 2008, former NFL star O.J. Simpson was sentenced to up to 33 years in prison for holding up two sports memorabilia dealers at gunpoint in a Las Vegas hotel. He was released in October 2017.

In 2009, an explosion and fire ignited by fireworks killed 156 people and injured dozens of others at a Russian nightclub in the Urals.

In 2013, Nelson Mandela, who spent 27 years in prison and helped end apartheid in South Africa, died in Johannesburg at the age of 95. "He is now resting. He is now at peace," President Jacob Zuma said. "Our nation has lost its greatest son. Our people have lost a father."

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In 2014, NASA successfully launched its Orion spacecraft, its hope for the future of manned space travel and an eventual trip to Mars.

In 2017, the International Olympic Committee banned the entire Russian Olympic team from the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea over a doping scandal. Select Russian olympians were allowed to participate under the team name "Olympic athletes from Russia."

In 2020, Russia began vaccinating people at high risk for COVID-19 with its Sputnik V vaccine.


A thought for the day: "We tell ourselves stories in order to live ... . We look for the sermon in the suicide, for the social or moral lesson in the murder of five." -- American author Joan Didion

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