Mar-22: Legends of the Fall

Today marks the anniversaries of the first impeachment of a U.S. governor, Karl Wallenda falling to his death from a tight-rope, a US Air crash at La Guardia and the near-fatal injury of goalie Clint Malarchuk.  It also is the birthday of Oscar-winning actor Haing S. Ngor whose life was marked by the tragedies he survived and the one he did not.

In addition, since this was originally published in 2015 it also became a day of terror in Brussels and London.

1871

First U.S. Governor Removed by Impeachment

William Woods Holden was an anti-Confederate Republican elected governor of North Carolina during Reconstruction.  Holden was a staunch opponent of the KKK and use state militias and even martial law to fight them, which caused a political backlash that restored Democratic majorities in both houses and ultimately led to his impeachment and removal as Governor.  Holden was the first U.S. governor to be impeached and removed, although in 2011 he was posthumously pardoned by the North Carolina Senate.

1978

Flying Wallenda Patriarch Falls to His Death

Karl Wallenda, the patriarch of The Flying Wallendas dies after falling off a tight-rope between two hotels in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The Wallendas have been performing together since 1922.  Karl’s great-grandson Nik Wallenda has successfully walked over Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon.

 

1989

Sabres’ Goalie’s Near-Fatal Injury

Clint Malarchuk of the Buffalo Sabres suffers a near-fatal injury when another player’s skate accidentally slits his throat.  Today, goalie masks have a throat covering to protect from blade injuries.

1992

US Air Flight 405 Crashes Near LaGuardia

USAir Flight 405 crashes shortly after takeoff from New York City’s LaGuardia Airport, leading to a number of studies into the effect that ice has on aircraft.  Twenty-seven passengers and crew members were killed in the crash.


 

2016

Suicide Bombings at Brussels Airport and Metro

ISIS struck Brussels with three coordinated suicide bombings: two at Brussels Airport  and one at Maalbeek metro station in central Brussels.  The bombings killed 32 civilians and injured another 300.

2017

Terrorist Car Attack Near Westminister Palace

A radicalized British citizen who vowed to wage jihad in retaliation for military action against Muslim countries drove a car into pedestrians on Westminister Bridge before crashing into the perimeter fence of Westminister Palace. He then fatally stabbed a police officer before being shot and killed by police.  The attack killed six and injured more than 50.

 

Birthday

Haing S. Ngor  was a survivor of the Cambodian killing fields who won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Dith Pran in The Killing Fields.  He was killed in a robbery in Los Angeles in 1996 when he gave up his Rolex watch but refused to give up a locket containing a picture of the wife he lost in Cambodia.

Other Birthdays (Updated)

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It is amazing the musical talent born on this day and I feel fortunate to have seen the great George Benson live and seen Stephanie Mills on Broadway while she was still in The Wiz. Add Stephen Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Weber whose songs are sung anywhere there is musical theater.

Don’t forget Lena Olin who was one of the first female bad ass characters and did it with style, plus President Obama’s “Anger Translator” Keegan Michael-Key of Key & Peele.  Throw in the legendary William Shatner and French Actress Fanny Ardant and you have quite a collection.

STEPHEN SONDHEIM – 88

WILLIAM SHATNER – 87

GEORGE BENSON – 75

ANDREW LLOYD WEBER -70

FANNY ARDANT – 69

LENA OLIN – 63

STEPHANIE MILLS – 61

KEEGAN MICHAEL-KEY – 47

. . . and a legend long gone.

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