03 October 2006

This day in history: 3 Oct

1863: Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of Thanksgiving, to be celebrated on the last Thursday of November.

1962: Wally Schirra (Captain, USN) was launched into space for a nine-hour flight in the Sigma 7, completing six orbits in the Mercury 8 mission.

1985: The space shuttle Atlantis began its maiden flight, a four-day trip (STS-51-J) with Karol J Bobko (Colonel, USAF) as mission commander.

1990: East Germany (DDR) and West Germany (BRD) were reunited as a single nation.

1993: US Special Operations forces attempted to capture Somali militia leaders in Mogadishu. 18 US soldiers and one Malaysian were killed in the overnight battle, and 88 US, Malaysian and Pakistani soldiers were wounded; Somali casualties were estimated at between 500 and 2000. Two soldiers, MSG Gary Gordon and SFC Randall Shughart, were awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously.

St Francis of Assisi (1182-1226), Myles Standish (ca 1584-1656), Captain Jack (ca 1837-1873) and Roddy McDowall (1928-1998) died on this date.

And happy birthday to John Ross (1790-1866), Emily Post (1873-1960), James Herriot (1916-1995), Chubby Checker (1941-TBD) and Greg Proops (1959-TBD).

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