The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY)
TODAY IN HISTORY
Israeli fighter planes shot down Libyan Arab Airlines Flight 114 over the Sinai Desert, killing all but five of the 113 people on board.
Kristi Yamaguchi (yah-mah-goo’-chee) of the United States won the gold medal in ladies’ figure skating at the Albertville Olympics; Midori Ito (mee-doh-ree eetoh) of Japan won the silver, Nancy Kerrigan of the U.S. the bronze.
Chicago adventurer Steve Fossett became the first person to fly solo across the Pacific Ocean by balloon, landing in Leader, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Teachers in Oakland, California, went on strike in the latest in a wave of teacher activism that had included walkouts in Denver, Los Angeles and West Virginia.
Opposition activists said at least 31people were killed in a car bomb attack in Damascus near the headquarters of the ruling Baath party and the Russian Embassy. Drew Peterson, the Chicago-area police officer who gained notoriety after his much-younger fourth wife, Stacy Peterson, vanished in 2007, was sentenced to 38 years in prison for murdering his third wife, Kathleen Savio.
The Rev. Billy Graham, a confidant of presidents and the most widely heard Christian evangelist in history, died at his North Carolina home at age 99. A week after the Florida school shooting, President Donald Trump met with teen survivors of school violence and parents of slain children; Trump promised to be “very strong on background checks” and suggested he supported letting some teachers and other school employees carry weapons. Thousands of protesters swarmed the Florida state Capitol, calling for changes to gun laws, a ban on assault-type weapons and improved care for the mentally ill. The NBA fined Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban $600,000 for saying he had recently told some of his players that “losing is our best option.” (The Mavericks had one of the league’s worst records, putting them in position to land a high draft pick.)
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered forces to “maintain peace” in separatist regions of eastern Ukraine, hours after the Kremlin recognized the area’s independence. The announcement raised fears that an invasion was imminent. (It would come three days later.) British Prime Minister Boris Johnson scrapped the last domestic coronavirus restrictions in England, including the requirement for people with COVID-19 to self-isolate.