Today is Friday, Jan. 24, the 24th day of 2020. There are 342 days left in the year.
Birthdays: Cajun musician Doug Kershaw is 84. Singer-songwriter Ray Stevens is 81. Singer-songwriter Neil Diamond is 79. Singer Aaron Neville is 79. Actor Michael Ontkean is 74. Actor Daniel Auteuil is 70. Comedian Yakov Smirnoff is 69. South Korean President Moon Jae-in is 67. Bandleader-musician Jools Holland is 62. Actress Nastassja Kinski is 59. Olympic gold medal gymnast Mary Lou Retton is 52. Blues/rock singer Beth Hart is 48. Actor Ed Helms is 46. Actor Mark Hildreth is 42. Actress Tatyana Ali is 41. Actress Carrie Coon is 39. Actor Daveed Diggs is 38. Actress Mischa Barton is 34.
In 1848, James W. Marshall discovered a gold nugget at Sutter’s Mill in Northern California, a discovery that led to the gold rush of ‘49.
In 1935, beer was first sold in cans in Richmond, Va., by the Gottfried Krueger Brewing Co.
In 1939, at least 28,000 people were killed by an earthquake that devastated the city of Chillan in Chile.
In 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill concluded a wartime conference in Casablanca, Morocco.
In 1963, a B-52 Stratofortress crashed into Elephant Mountain in Maine, killing seven crew members and severely injuring the other two members, who faced a brutal night of 29 degrees below zero before rescuers found them. The bomber, which took from Westover, Mass., was on a flight test to determine if the high-altitude bomber could fly close to the ground but turbulence ripped off its vertical stabilizer.
In 1965, British statesman Winston Churchill died in London at age 90.
In 1984, Apple Computer began selling its first Macintosh model, which boasted a built-in 9-inch monochrome display, a clock rate of 8 megahertz and 128k of RAM.
In 1985, the space shuttle Discovery was launched from Cape Canaveral on the first secret, all-military shuttle mission.
In 1987, gunmen in Lebanon kidnapped educators Alann Steen, Jesse Turner, Robert Polhill and Mitheleshwar Singh. (All were eventually released.)
In 1989, confessed serial killer Theodore Bundy was executed in Florida’s electric chair.
In 1993, retired Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall died in Bethesda, Md., at age 84.
In 2003, former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge was sworn as the first secretary of the new Department of Homeland Security.
In 2018, former sports doctor Larry Nassar, who had admitted molesting some of the nation’s top gymnasts for years under the guise of medical treatment, was sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison. Singer Elton John announced that he would be retiring from the road after an upcoming three-year global tour.
Parts of the Northeast got their first real taste of winter as a storm dumped rain, sleet, and snow as it moved up the coast.
Last year, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro called home all Venezuelan diplomats from the United States and closed its embassy, a day after ordering all US diplomats out of the country; the Trump administration had said the order wasn’t legal because the US now recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido, and not Maduro, as Venezuela’s legitimate leader.