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Today in History — July 2

July 2, 2014

By the Associated Press


Today is Wednesday, July 2, the 183rd day of 2014. There are 182 days left in the year.


Today’s Highlight in History:


On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law a sweeping civil rights bill passed by Congress.


On this date:


In 1714, German composer Christoph Willibald Gluck was born in Erasbach.


In 1776, the Continental Congress passed a resolution saying that “these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.”


In 1864, President Abraham Lincoln signed a measure establishing the National Statuary Hall inside the former House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol.


In 1881, President James A. Garfield was shot by Charles J. Guiteau at the Washington railroad station; Garfield died the following September. (Guiteau was hanged in June 1882.)


In 1926, the United States Army Air Corps was created.


In 1937, aviator Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan disappeared over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first round-the-world flight along the equator.


In 1943, Bing Crosby and the Ken Darby Singers recorded “Sunday, Monday or Always” for Decca Records.


In 1961, author Ernest Hemingway shot himself to death at his home in Ketchum, Idaho.


In 1979, the Susan B. Anthony dollar coin was released to the public.


In 1982, Larry Walters of San Pedro, California, used a lawn chair equipped with 45 helium-filled weather balloons to rise to an altitude of 16,000 feet; he landed eight miles away in Long Beach.


In 1994, a USAir DC-9 crashed in poor weather at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport in North Carolina, killing 37 of the 57 people aboard. Colombian soccer player Andres Escobar, 27, was shot to death in Medellin, ten days after accidentally scoring a goal against his own team in World Cup competition.


In 1999, former Northwestern University basketball coach Ricky Byrdsong was shot to death in Skokie, Illinois; authorities believe he was the victim of a three-day shooting rampage by white supremacist Benjamin Nathaniel Smith that targeted minorities in Illinois and Indiana. (One other person was killed and others wounded before Smith committed suicide.) “Godfather” author Mario Puzo died on Long Island, New York, at age 78.


Ten years ago: Elijah Brown, 21, described by police as a disgruntled employee, went on a shooting rampage inside a ConAgra Foods Inc. plant in Kansas City, Kansas, killing five co-workers before taking his own life.


Five years ago: Thousands of U.S. Marines poured into Taliban-controlled villages in southern Afghanistan in the first major operation under President Barack Obama’s strategy to stabilize the country. North Korea test-fired two short-range missiles. The 35-nation International Atomic Energy Agency chose Yukiya Amano of Japan as its next head. Federal marshals took possession of disgraced financier Bernard Madoff’s $7 million Manhattan penthouse, forcing Madoff’s wife, Ruth, to move elsewhere.


One year ago: The Obama administration unexpectedly announced a one-year delay, until after the 2014 elections, in a central requirement of the health care law that medium and large companies provide coverage for their workers or face fines. Homer Bailey threw his second no-hitter in 10 months, pitching the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-0 victory over the slumping San Francisco Giants. Olympic track star Suzy Favor Hamilton’s name was removed from the Big Ten female athlete of the year award following revelations she had worked as a prostitute.


Today’s Birthdays: Former Philippine first lady Imelda Marcos is 85. Jazz musician Ahmad Jamal is 84. Actor Robert Ito is 83. Actress Polly Holliday is 77. Racing Hall of Famer Richard Petty is 77. Former White House chief of staff John H. Sununu is 75. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox is 72. Writer-director-comedian Larry David is 67. Luci Baines Johnson, daughter of President Lyndon B. Johnson, is 67. Actor Saul Rubinek is 66. Rock musician Roy Bittan (Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band) is 65. Rock musician Gene Taylor is 62. Actress-model Jerry Hall is 58. Actor Jimmy McNichol is 53. Country singer Guy Penrod is 51. Rock musician Dave Parsons (Bush) is 49. Actress Yancy Butler is 44. Contemporary Christian musician Melodee DeVevo (Casting Crowns) is 38. Actor Owain (OH’-wyn) Yeoman is 36. Race car driver Sam Hornish Jr. is 35. Singer Michelle Branch is 31. Actress Vanessa Lee Chester is 30. Figure skater Johnny Weir is 30. Actress-singer Ashley Tisdale is 29. Actress Lindsay Lohan (LOH’-uhn) is 28.


Thought for Today: “No great man lives in vain. The history of the world is but the biography of great men.” — Thomas Carlyle, Scottish critic and historian (1795-1881).