Flashback archive

Saratov Airlines Flight 703 crashes

Saratov Airlines Flight 703 was a regularly scheduled domestic passenger flight from Moscow's Moscow Domodedovo Airport to Orsk Airport in Orenburg, a city near the border of Kazakhstan. The flight crashed shortly after take-off, killing all 65 passengers and six crew members aboard.

Prison riot breaks out at the Topo Chico prison

A prison riot broke out at the Topo Chico prison near Monterrey, Mexico. 49 inmates were killed during the riot and ensuing fire. The riot was the most deadly in Mexican penal history. After the rioting, authorities uncovered 'luxury cells' prison leaders had. Items confiscated included televisions, mini-fridges, aquariums, and saunas.

Oil price falls to 13-year low

Because of oversupply and lack of agreements between oil-producing countries members of the OPEC and also because of lack of coordinated efforts between OPEC and Non-OPEC countries the price of oil fell rapidly and continued to slide, causing the cost of WTI crude to fall to a 13-year low.

Google Bends on Right-to-be-Forgotten Rule in EU

Google has expanded how it applies Europe’s right-to-be-forgotten rule for search engines, bending to demands from privacy regulators. Google removed links from all of its global search sites when a user in a European Union country would search for information about a person from the same country who has exercised the right to be forgotten.

A university student is murdered

Özgecan Aslan was a Turkish university student who was murdered as she resisted a rape attempt on a minibus in Mersin, Turkey. The murder was committed by the minibus driver Ahmet Suphi Altındöken, his father Necmettin Altındöken and his friend Fatih Gökçe. All perpetrators were handed aggravated life sentences without the possibility of parole.

Military transport plane crashes

A C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft of the Algerian Air Force crashed into Djebel Fertas mountain near Aïn Kercha, Algeria, with 74 passengers and 4 crew on board. Only one person survived. Preliminary reports suggest that bad weather conditions might have caused the crash.

"The Martian" is published by Crown

The Martian is a science fiction novel written by Andy Weir. It was his debut novel under his own name. It was originally self-published in 2011; Crown Publishing purchased the rights and re-released it 3 years later. The story follows an American astronaut, Mark Watney, as he becomes stranded alone on Mars in the year 2035 and must improvise in order to survive.

Whitney Houston is found dead

Whitney Elizabeth Houston was an American singer, actress, producer, and model. Houston was found unconscious in Suite 434 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, submerged in the bathtub. Beverly Hills paramedics arrived at approximately 3:30 p.m. and found the singer unresponsive and performed CPR. Houston was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m. PST.

"The Phantom of the Opera" celebrates its 10,000th Broadway performance

Phantom began Broadway previews at the Majestic Theatre in 1988. Crawford, Brightman, and Barton reprised their respective roles from the West End. The production continues to play at the Majestic, where it became the first Broadway musical in history to surpass 10,000 performances.

Ronettes singer Estelle Bennett dies aged 67

Bennett died of colon cancer, aged 67, in Englewood, New Jersey. Her body was discovered on February 11, 2009. A week after her death, it was revealed that she had suffered from anorexia nervosa and schizophrenia in the years after the Ronettes break up and that later on, she had been homeless in New York.

Novelist Peter Benchley dies at 65

Benchley, the author of novel Jaws about a killer shark, died at his home in Princeton, New Jersey. According to doctors, the cause of death was pulmonary fibrosis, a progressive scarring of the lungs. He left behind his wife Wendy, 3 children -Tracy, Clayton and Christopher – and 5 grandchildren.


Winter Olympics figure skating scandal

The controversy led to two pairs teams receiving gold medals: the original winners Elena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze of Russia and original silver-medalists Jamie Salé and David Pelletier of Canada. The scandal was one of the causes for the revamp of scoring in figure skating to the new ISU Judging System.


50th NBA All-Star Game

Allen Iverson was named the game's Most Valuable Player after he rallied the East to garner an improbable 111–110 comeback victory over the West. The East trailed 95–74 with nine minutes left after the West dominated the first 39 minutes behind its superior size.

Second Hubble repair

Astronauts from the space shuttle Discovery performed repairs and upgrades on Hubble space telescope. They removed old spectrometers and data recorder and installed new. They also replaced several other minor pieces of hardware with upgrades or spares and repaired the thermal insulation of the hull.

Whoopi Goldberg takes over the role of Pseudolus

"A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum" musical was revived again with great success opening at the St. James Theatre and closing after 715 performances. The cast starred Nathan Lane as Pseudolus, replaced by Whoopi Goldberg and later by David Alan Grier. Lane won the 1996 Tony Award for Best Leading Actor and the Drama Desk Award, Outstanding Actor in a Musical; the production was nominated for the 1996 Tony Award and Drama Desk Award, Revival of a Musical.


Undefeated champion Mike Tyson loses via knockout

Mike Tyson vs. Buster Douglas was a historic boxing match that occurred at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, in which then undefeated, undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson lost via knockout to the 42–1 underdog Buster Douglas. The fight is widely considered one of the biggest upsets in sports history.

Nelson Mandela is released after 27 years imprisonment

Nelson Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, political leader, and philanthropist, who served as President of South Africa. He served 27 years in prison, initially on Robben Island, and later in Pollsmoor Prison and Victor Verster Prison. President F. W. de Klerk released him in 1990.

The fifth Brit Awards are held

The 1985 Brit Awards were the 5th edition of the biggest annual pop music awards in the United Kingdom. They are run by the British Phonographic Industry. The ceremony was held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London and was hosted by Noel Edmonds.

Aubrey O’Day is born

Aubrey Morgan O'Day is an American singer-songwriter, member of the duo Dumblonde, reality television personality, and a former member of the girl group Danity Kane. O'Day began performing at age five. "I lived on the stage, and even at six, slept behind the seats of the theatre," she stated in an interview.

Kelly Rowland is born

Kelendria Trene Rowland is an American singer, songwriter, actress and television personality. She was born in Atlanta, Georgia. She is the daughter of Doris Rowland Garrison and Christopher Lovett. Kelly has an older brother named Orlando.

"They're Playing Our Song" opens on Broadway at the Imperial Theatre

They're Playing Our Song is a musical with a book by Neil Simon, lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager, and music by Marvin Hamlisch. The musical opened on Broadway at the Imperial Theatre where it ran for 1,082 performances and 11 previews. Directed by Robert Moore and choreographed by Patricia Birch, the cast starred Robert Klein and Lucie Arnaz.

Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park is born

Michael Kenji Shinoda is an American musician, songwriter, record producer and graphic designer. Shinoda was born in Agoura Hills, California, where he was raised. His father is Japanese. He has a younger brother named Jason. He was raised as a liberal Protestant.

Japan becomes the world’s fourth space power

Ōsumi is the name of the first Japanese satellite put into orbit, named after the Ōsumi Province in the southern islands of Japan. It was launched with a Lambda 4S-5 rocket from Uchinoura Space Center. Japan became the fourth nation after the USSR, the United States and France to release an artificial satellite into successful orbit on its own.

Madison Square Garden is officially opened

The new structure was one of the first of its kind to be built above the platforms of an active railroad station. It was an engineering feat constructed by Robert E. McKee of El Paso, Texas. Public outcry over the demolition of the Pennsylvania Station structure—an outstanding example of Beaux-Arts architecture—led to the creation of the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission.

The Monkees set a new record, jumps from #122 to the top

More of the Monkees is the second full-length album by the Monkees. It was recorded in late 1966 and released on Colgems label #102. It displaced the band's debut album from the top of the Billboard 200 chart and remained at No.1 for 18 weeks—the longest of any Monkees album.

The Beatles make their American concert debut

The Beatles' first U.S. concert took place, at Washington Coliseum. The concert was attended by eight thousand fans. The Beatles performed on a central stage in the arena, with the audience on all sides, and there were regular pauses to enable the band to turn their equipment around and perform facing in another direction.

Nuclear Fission is explained

Nature journal published a paper by Austrian scientists Lise Meitner and Otto Frisch (they were cousins) on nuclear fission. The reaction itself was discovered by German Otto Hahn a year earlier. Meitner and Frisch found an explanation for it. They named the process by analogy with biological fission of living cells.

General Motors recognizes unions after "sit-down strike"

The United Auto Workers staged successful sit-down strikes, most famously in the Flint Sit-Down Strike. In Flint, Michigan, strikers occupied several General Motors plants for more than forty days and repelled the efforts of the police and National Guard to retake them.


The II Olympic Winter Games open in St. Moritz, Switzerland

The Winter Olympics in St. Moritz, Switzerland attracted 464 athletes, 438 men, and 26 women, representing 25 countries, who participated in 4 sports and 14 events. The Games were the first true Winter Olympics held on its own as they were not in conjunction with a Summer Olympics.

Novelist Sidney Sheldon is born

Sheldon was born in Chicago, Illinois as Sidney Schechtel. He sold his first poem at the age of 10 for $5. Later, he enlisted in the army during WW2, however, his unit was disbanded before he got into combat. He moved to NYC and began progressing with his career, writing musicals, screenplays and novels.

American mathematician Richard Hamming is born

His discoveries had many implications to telecommunications and computer science. Most known are probably the Hamming codes for error detecting and correcting. He also worked on the Manhattan project, at the Los Alamos Laboratory, where he programmed the calculating machines that computed the solution to equations provided by the project's physicists.

Oscar Wilde's "Salome" premieres in Paris

Even though Salome was published in 1893 in Paris, it was not until 3 years later when it was finally performed. It told the story of Salome, stepdaughter of Herod Antipas, who requested the head of Jokanaan as a reward from him. During its performance, Wilde has been locked in the prison for sodomy and gross indecency.

Anniversaries of famous