Today is Saturday, Oct. 6, the 279th day of 2018. There are 86 days left in the year.
Birthdays: Broadcaster and writer Melvyn Bragg is 80. Actress Britt Ekland is 77. Singer Millie Small is 73. The former leader of Sinn Fein, Gerry Adams, is 71. Singer-musician Thomas McClary is 70. Musician Sid McGinnis is 70. Rock singer Kevin Cronin (REO Speedwagon) is 68. Rock singer-musician David Hidalgo (Los Lobos) is 65. Pro Football Hall of Famer Tony Dungy is 64. Actress Elisabeth Shue is 56. Actress Emily Mortimer is 48. Rhythm-and-blues singer Melinda Doolittle is 42.
In 1536, English theologian and scholar William Tyndale, who was the first to translate the Bible into Early Modern English, was executed for heresy.
In 1892, British poet laureate Alfred, Lord Tennyson died in Surrey, England, at age 83.
In 1927, the era of talking pictures arrived with the opening of ‘‘The Jazz Singer’’ starring Al Jolson, a feature containing both silent and sound-synchronized sequences.
In 1939, in a speech to the Reichstag, German Chancellor Adolf Hitler spoke of his plans to reorder the ethnic layout of Europe — a plan which would entail settling the ‘‘Jewish problem.’’
In 1949, President Harry S. Truman signed the Mutual Defense Assistance Act, providing $1.3 billion in military aid to NATO countries.
In 1958, the nuclear submarine USS Seawolf surfaced after spending 60 days submerged.
In 1973, war erupted in the Middle East as Egypt and Syria launched a surprise attack on Israel during the Yom Kippur holiday. (Israel, initially caught off guard, managed to push back the Arab forces before a cease-fire finally took hold in the nearly three-week conflict.)
In 1976, President Gerald R. Ford, in his second presidential debate with Democrat Jimmy Carter, asserted that there was ‘‘no Soviet domination of eastern Europe.’’ (Ford later conceded such was not the case.)
In 1979, Pope John Paul II, on a week-long US tour, became the first pontiff to visit the White House, where he was received by President Jimmy Carter.
In 1981, Egyptian President Anwar Sadat was shot to death by extremists while reviewing a military parade.
In 1989, actress Bette Davis died in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, at age 81.
In 2003, American Paul Lauterbur and Briton Peter Mansfield won the Nobel Prize for medicine for discoveries that led to magnetic resonance imaging.
In 2004, the top US arms inspector in Iraq, Charles Duelfer, reported finding no evidence Saddam Hussein’s regime had produced weapons of mass destruction after 1991.
In 2008, President Barack Obama said Al Qaeda had ‘‘lost operational capacity’’ in Afghanistan after a series of military setbacks and vowed to continue the battle to cripple the terror organization. George Papandreou was sworn in as Greece’s new Socialist prime minister. Americans Charles K. Kao, Willard S. Boyle and George E. Smith won the Nobel Prize in physics.
In 2013, the Supreme Court unexpectedly cleared the way for a dramatic expansion of gay marriage in the United States as it rejected appeals from five states seeking to preserve their bans, effectively making such marriages legal in 30 states. Husband-and-wife scientists Edvard Moser and May-Britt Moser of Norway and New York-born researcher John O’Keefe were named recipients of the Nobel Prize in medicine for discovering the brain’s GPS-like system. USA Swimming suspended Michael Phelps for six months as a result of the Olympic champion’s second DUI arrest.
In 2017, in the narrowest Senate confirmation of a Supreme Court justice in nearly a century and a half, Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed by a 50-48 vote; he was sworn in hours later. A supersized limousine ran a stop sign and hit a parked SUV in Schoharie, N.Y., killing all 18 people in the vehicle and two bystanders. New Jersey Senator Cory Booker made his national debut in Iowa as a Democratic presidential prospect, telling a party fundraiser that Democrats who were disappointed by Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation should turn their despair into action.