On April 17, 2004, the Israeli army confirmed it had killed Abdel Aziz Rantisi, Hamas co-founder and its leader in Gaza, in a missile strike. Two others also died with Rantisi, who had opposed any compromise with Israel.
Those born on this date are under the sign of Aries. They include American industrialist/financier J.P. Morgan in 1837; baseball Hall of Fame member Cap Anson in 1852; Danish author Karen Blixen (Out of Africa), who wrote under the name Isak Dinesen, in 1885; actor William Holden in 1918; music promoter Don Kirshner in 1934; musician Jan Hammer in 1948 (age 71); actor Olivia Hussey in 1951 (age 68); author Nick Hornby in 1957 (age 62); actor Sean Bean in 1959 (age 60); singer Maynard James Keenan in 1964 (age 55); actor Henry Ian Cusick in 1967 (age 52); singer Liz Phair in 1967 (age 52); rapper Redman, born Reggie Noble, in 1970 (age 49); actor Jennifer Garner in 1972 (age 47); singer/model Victoria Beckham in 1974 (age 45); actor Rooney Mara in 1985 (age 34).
On this date in history:
In 1421, the sea broke the dikes at Dort, Holland, drowning an estimated 100,000 people.
In 1521, the Roman Catholic Church excommunicated Martin Luther after he refused to admit to charges of heresy.
In 1524, Italian navigator Giovanni Verrazano discovered New York Harbor.
In 1790, U.S. statesman, printer, scientist and writer Benjamin Franklin died in Philadelphia at age 84.
In 1912, the sister ship of the doomed RMS Titanic, the Olympic, radioed in that survivors of the ocean liner sinking were rescued and safely on board the RMS Carpathia.
In 1961, a force of anti-Castro rebels began the Bay of Pigs Invasion in an attempt to overthrow Cuba’s new communist government.
In 1964, Jerrie Mock of Columbus, Ohio, became the first woman to complete a solo flight around the world.
In 1969, a jury found Sirhan B. Sirhan guilty of first-degree murder for the assassination of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.
In 1989, the Polish labor union Solidarity was granted legal status after nearly a decade of struggle and suppression — clearing the way for the downfall of the country’s Communist Party.
In 1993, a federal jury convicted two Los Angeles police officers and acquitted two others of violating the civil rights of Rodney King during his 1991 arrest and beating.
In 2003, billionaire philanthropist John Paul Getty Jr. died in London at the age of 70.
In 2004, the Israeli army confirmed it had killed Abdel Aziz Rantisi, Hamas co-founder and its leader in Gaza, in a missile strike. Two others also died with Rantisi, who had opposed any compromise with Israel.
In 2012, U.S. investor Warren Buffett, one of the world’s wealthiest people, said he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer.
In 2013, an explosion at a West, Texas, fertilizer plant killed 15 people, injured dozens and caused massive property damage in the community.
In 2014, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Colombian author of magical realism novels One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera, died. He was 87.
In 2018, former first lady Barbara Bush died at the age of 92 after refusing medical treatment for her failing health. Her husband, former President George H.W. Bush, died less than one year later.
A thought for the day: Rudyard Kipling wrote, “Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.”