Today's Highlight in History:
On Oct. 12, 1984, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher escaped an attempt on her life when an Irish Republican Army bomb exploded at a hotel in Brighton, England, killing five people.
On Oct. 12:
In 1492 (according to the Old Style calendar), Christopher Columbus' expedition arrived in the present-day Bahamas.
In 1810, the German festival Oktoberfest was first held in Munich to celebrate the wedding of Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen.
In 1870, General Robert E. Lee died in Lexington, Va., at age 63.
In 1942, during World War II, American naval forces defeated the Japanese in the Battle of Cape Esperance. Attorney General Francis Biddle announced during a Columbus Day celebration at Carnegie Hall in New York that Italian nationals in the United States would no longer be considered enemy aliens.
In 1973, President Richard Nixon nominated House minority leader Gerald R. Ford of Michigan to succeed Spiro T. Agnew as vice president.
In 1976, it was announced in China that Hua Guofeng had been named to succeed the late Mao Zedong as chairman of the Communist Party; it was also announced that Mao's widow and three others, known as the "Gang of Four," had been arrested.
In 1984, Actor Jon-Erik Hexum was mortally wounded on the set of his TV show "Cover Up" when he jokingly shot himself in the head with a prop pistol loaded with a blank cartridge; he was declared dead six days later.
In 1997, singer John Denver was killed in the crash of his privately built aircraft in Monterey Bay, California; he was 53.
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In 2000, 17 sailors were killed in a suicide bomb attack on the destroyer USS Cole in Yemen.
In 2001, NBC announced that an assistant to anchorman Tom Brokaw had contracted the skin form of anthrax after opening a "threatening" letter to her boss containing powder.
In 2002, bombs blamed on al-Qaida-linked militants destroyed a nightclub on the Indonesian island of Bali, killing 202 people, including 88 Australians and seven Americans.
In 2007, Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the Nobel Peace Prize for sounding the alarm over global warming.
In 2009, a suicide car bombing near a market in northwestern Pakistan killed 41. Addressing the Northern Ireland Assembly, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton urged rival leaders of the power-sharing government to keep making their coalition work for the sake of lasting peace. Americans Elinor Ostrom and Oliver Williamson won the Nobel economics prize.
In 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed that a health care worker at the Texas hospital where Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan was treated before his death had tested positive for the illness in the first known case of Ebola being contracted or transmitted in the U.S. (The worker, later identified as nurse Nina Pham, was treated and declared free of Ebola.) Mississippi State was the new No. 1 in The Associated Press college football poll, replacing Florida State and making the fastest rise to the top spot in the history of the poll. (The Bulldogs were the first team in the poll's 78-year history to go from unranked to No. 1 in five weeks.)
In 2018, search and rescue teams found the body of a hurricane victim in Mexico Beach, the Florida panhandle town that was nearly obliterated by Hurricane Michael; the death toll across the South reached at least 14. Pope Francis accepted the resignation of the archbishop of Washington, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, after he became entangled in two major sexual abuse and cover-up scandals. American pastor Andrew Brunson flew out of Turkey after a Turkish court convicted him of terror links but freed him from house arrest; he'd already spent nearly two years in detention. Roelof "Pik" Boetha, the last foreign minister of South Africa's apartheid era, died at the age of 86.
Thought for Today:
"The want of logic annoys. Too much logic bores. Life eludes logic, and everything that logic alone constructs remains artificial and forced."
— Andre Gide, French author and critic (1869-1951).