In this year…
JANUARY Brain, the first PC virus, starts to spread. Space shuttle Challenger disintegrates 73 seconds after launch, killing its crew of six astronauts and schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe. National Hugging Day is first observed, leaving cooties activists scrambling.
FEBRUARY The United States Senate approves a treaty outlawing genocide. Bye-bye Baby Doc: Haitian dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier flees the country in the wake of a popular revolution.
APRIL A reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear plant explodes, creating the world’s worst nuclear disaster. Vast territories in Ukraine and Belarus are rendered uninhabitable. Tommy Douglas, politician and Father of Medicare, dies.
MAY At least 5-million people hold Hands Across America from New York City to California to raise money to fight hunger and homelessness.
JUNE Today’s estimated projected cost of domed stadium: $235 million. Original project cost: $150 million (as reported in October 1985). Final cost: $628 million.
JULY A judge rules that the It’s A Girl exhibit by feminist art collective Woomers is not a “disgusting object” and that Pages bookstore is not guilty for displaying it
in its window. Prince Andrew marries Sarah Ferguson. After losing 160 pounds of prince in a divorce 10 years later, Fergie becomes a spokesperson for Weight Watchers.
SEPTEMBER RIP: Gay racing steward John Damien, who sued the Ontario Racing Commission after being fired because of his sexual orientation. Toronto board of education trustee Olivia Chow (now federal MP for Trinity-Spadina) speaks in support of doctors at the Morgentaler abortion clinic after their arrest by Metro Toronto police.
OCTOBER NOW interviews anti-apartheid leader Dennis Goldberg upon his release from a South African prison after 21 years. On October 9, Ward 6 councillor Jack Layton (now leader of the federal NDP) speaks out against council’s resistance to extending health care benefits to the families of lesbian and gay city employees. Environment Ministry confirms that lead levels in the South Riverdale and Niagara neighbourhoods are five to 10 times higher than normal.
NOVEMBER Innu activists come to Toronto in their campaign to stop lowlevel flights by NATO military aircraft over Labrador. Animal rights groups launch boycott of Gillette to stop cosmetics testing on lab animals.
DECEMBER Ontario amends its Human Rights Code to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. Logging of Temagami oldgrowth pine forests prompts the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources to add Lady Evelyn-Smoothwater Provincial Park to its registry of threatened world-class preserves.