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The Bri­tish team won five Olympic gold medals – Se­bas­tian Coe, Steve Ovett, Da­ley Thomp­son and Al­lan Wells for ath­let­ics, and Dun­can Good­hew for swim­ming – the UK fin­ish­ing ninth over­all. How­ever, in re­sponse to the Soviet war in Afghanistan, the Moscow Olympics was boy­cotted by 65 na­tions, in­clud­ing the United States, West Ger­many, Canada, Ja­pan and China.


The for­mer Repub­li­can Gov­er­nor of Cal­i­for­nia de­feated Jimmy Carter in the US Pres­i­den­tial Elec­tions. The results showed that Rea­gan won 489 elec­toral votes against 49 for the Democrats. At the age of 69, the one­time use­ful B-film lead­ing man was then the old­est Pres­i­dent-Elect in the his­tory of the USA. He be­came the 40th Pres­i­dent of the United States.


On the even­ing of De­cem­ber 8, 1980, Mark David Chap­man shot for­mer Bea­tle John Len­non four times as he en­tered the Dakota apart­ment build­ing on Man­hat­tan’s Up­per West Side. The mu­si­cian was rushed by po­lice car to St Luke’s Roo­sevelt Hospi­tal Cen­ter but was pro­nounced dead on ar­rival at 11.15pm. Len­non had moved to New York from Lon­don in 1971 with his wife, Yoko Ono.

Moscow and Los An­ge­les were the only two cities to pitch for the 1980 Olympics. LA won in 1984 – Rus­sia boy­cotted them. Rea­gan was fa­mous for many gaffes in of­fice. ‘Trees cause more pol­lu­tion than au­to­mo­biles,’ is one of our favourites. Len­non had been or­dered to leave the US in 1973. He got his green card in 1975.

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