On This Day December 30
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1935 – Baseball Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax
1942 – Singer-songwriter Michael Nesmith of The Monkees
1945 – Singer-songwriter and The Monkees band member Davy Jones (d. 2012)
1946 – Singer-songwriter Patti Smith, known as the “Godmother of Punk”
1953 – Emmy-winning journalist and TV host Meredith Vieira (“The View,” “The Today Show,” “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire”)
1957 – Former TV journalist and NBC “Today” co-host Matt Lauer, who was fired from his network job in November 2017 for inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace
1975 – Pro golf champion Tiger Woods, born Eldrick Tont Woods
1984 – NBA superstar LeBron James, who played for the Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers before signing with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018
1986 – Pop star Ellie Goulding (“Starry Eyed,” “Your Song,” “Anything Could Happen,” “On My Mind,” “Love Me like You Do”)
1922 – The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) is established as a new communist state following the era of the Russian Empire. It becomes the first country in the world to be based on Marxist socialism.
1936 – Known as “the strike heard round the world,” auto workers at General Motors’ Fisher Body Plant No. 1 in Flint, Michigan stage one of the first sit-down strikes in U.S. history. The workers were seeking safer assembly line conditions, better pay and recognition of the United Auto Workers (UAW) as the sole bargaining agent for GM employees. The strike lasts 44 days.
1940 – California opens its first freeway — the Arroyo Seco Parkway, one of only three “federal scenic byways” in California, and designated by the American Society of Civil Engineers as a historical engineering landmark.
1951 – The popular TV Western series, “The Roy Rogers Show,” premieres on NBC, starring Roy Rogers (a.k.a. “King of the Cowboys”) and his real-life wife, Dale Evans (a.k.a. “Queen of the West”). Each episode ended with the couple’s signature song, “Happy Trails.”
1963 – The game show “Let’s Make a Deal” debuts, hosted by Monty Hall.
1972 – President Richard Nixon orders a halt to the heavy bombing of North Vietnam.
1967 – The Beatles say “hello” to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 with “Hello, Goodbye,” the band’s 15th chart topper.
1968 – Peter Tork quits the pop-rock band The Monkees.
1978 – Chic rules the singles chart with disco anthem “Le Freak.”
1978 – Rock and Roll supergroup Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP) officially announce their break-up.
1989 – “Another Day in Paradise,” Phil Collins’ song about homelessness, becomes the last No. 1 single of the 80s and first No. 1 single of the 90s. It goes on to capture Record of the Year honors at the 33rd Annual Grammy Awards.
1995 – Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men are in the middle of a 16-week ride atop the Billboard Hot 100 with “One Sweet Day” — the longest-running No. 1 song in the chart’s history at that time.
1999 – George Harrison suffers stab wounds to the chest and a punctured lung when a 33-year-old man breaks into his home in Oxfordshire, England and attacks the former Beatle and his wife, Olivia.
2000 – Destiny’s Child (featuring Beyoncé) is in the midst of an 11-week ride at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Independent Women Part 1,” from the “Charlie’s Angels” movie soundtrack.