On this Day July 30
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1945 – A Japanese submarine torpedoes the U.S. Navy cruiser U.S.S. Indianapolis in Pacific waters after it delivers the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima. The ship sinks in just 12 minutes. Of the approximately 1,200 crewmen, 300 go down with the ship. The rest face exposure, dehydration, saltwater poisoning and shark attacks while floating with few lifeboats and almost no food or water.
1956 – Two years after pushing to have the phrase “under God” inserted into the United States’ pledge of allegiance, President Dwight Eisenhower signs a law declaring “In God We Trust” the nation’s official motto.
1965 – President Lyndon Johnson signs the Medicare bill into law, granting seniors access to affordable healthcare. The bill-signing ceremony takes place at the Truman Library in Independence, Missouri, where former President Harry S. Truman is enrolled as Medicare’s first beneficiary and receives the first Medicare card.
2003 – The last of over 21 million Volkswagen Beetles, known as the “Volkswagen Type 1,” rolls off an assembly line in Puebla, Mexico, ending nearly 70 years of production. The baby blue car is sent to a museum in Wolfsburg, Germany, where VW is headquartered.
1966 – The Beatles own the No. 1 position on the Billboard album chart with “Yesterday…And Today.” The album, released in the U.S. and Canada only, holds the top spot for five weeks. It contains such fan favorites as “Drive My Car,” “Yesterday,” “We Can Work It Out,” “Nowhere Man” and “Day Tripper.”
1966 – The Troggs claim the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Wild Thing.” The track was originally recorded by the American rock band, The Wild Ones, in 1965, but never charted. The Troggs’ version holds at No. 1 for two weeks and reaches No. 2 on the pop chart in their native U.K.
2003 – Record producer Sam Phillips, who founded the legendary Sun Record Company and Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee, dies of respiratory failure. He discovered Elvis Presley and worked with other musical greats, including Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, B.B. King and Jerry Lee Lewis.