TODAY IN HISTORY
April 17, 1961
Some 1,500 CIA-trained Cuban exiles launched the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in an attempt to topple Fidel Castro, whose forces crushed the incursion by the third day.
ON THIS DATE
Cartoon character Daffy Duck made his debut in the Warner Bros. animated short “Porky’s Duck Hunt,” directed by Tex Avery.
Apollo 13 astronauts James A. Lovell, Fred W. Haise and Jack Swigert splashed down safely in the Pacific, four days after a ruptured oxygen tank crippled their spacecraft while en route to the moon.
The Boston Marathon allowed women to compete for the first time; Nina Kuscsik was the first officially recognized women’s champion, with a time of 3:10:26.
A federal jury in Los Angeles convicted two former police officers of violating the civil rights of beaten motorist Rodney King; two other officers were acquitted.