The World Almanac E-Newsletter
Volume 2, Number 7 - July 2002
What's in this issue?
July 2-7 - Boston Harborfest
July 1 - Canada Day
This Day in History - July
Featured Location of the Month: Featured Location of the Month: Las Vegas, Nevada
Location: SE Nevada; seat of Clark County; incorporated 1911. Nevada's largest city.
Population (2000 Census): 478,434
Mayor: Oscar B. Goodman (Democrat)
July Temperatures: Normal high of 105.9 degrees; Normal low of 76.2 degrees
Colleges & Universities: Community College of Southern Nevada; University of Nevada, Las Vegas; University of Phoenix-Nevada Campus
Museums: Donna Beam Fine Art Gallery at UNLV; Elvis-A-Rama Museum; Guggenheim Las Vegas; Guggenheim Hermitage Museum; Guinness World of Records Museum; Howard C. Cannon Aviation Museum; Las Vegas Art Museum; Las Vegas Natural History Museum; Liberace Museum; Lied Discovery Children's Museum; Madame Tussaud's Las Vegas; Marjorie Barrick Museum; Neon Museum; Nevada State Museum & Historical Society
Places to visit: The Strip, lined with numerous casinos and luxury resorts; Fremont Street Experience; Hoover Dam, Lake Mead National Recreation Area; Nellis Air Force Base
Tallest Building: Stratosphere Tower (1,149 feet)
History: The city's name, Spanish for "the meadows," refers to grassland seen along spring-fed desert streams by early Spanish explorers of the area. The first settlers were Mormons, who maintained a colony here during 1855-57. Fort Baker was built by the U.S. Army in 1864 to guard a route to California, and the modern community was established in 1905 with the coming of the railroad.
The city's main growth began in the 1940s with the establishment of the first casinos, and its population has increased steadily since the 1960s. In 1980, some 84 persons were killed by a fire in the MGM Grand, a hotel and gaming center here (a new MGM Grand Hotel was built in 1993). In the late 1990s, Las Vegas experienced another growth spurt, with about $6 billion in casino and hotel construction and a population increase averaging 5,000 a month. The city's population increased by 85% from 1990 to 2000.
Birthplace of: Andre Agassi (1970); Abby Dalton (1932); Loren Dean (1969); Michele Greene (1962); Carey Hart (1975); Jack Kramer (1921); T. J. Lavin (1976); Jenny Lewis (1979); Thomas Ian Nicholas (1980)
Websites: http://www.ci.las-vegas.nv.us; http://www.lasvegas.com
Obituaries in June 2002
Belaunde Terry, Fernando, 89, architect turned politician who was president of Peru from 1963-68 and 1980-85; Lima, Peru, June 4.
Blass, Bill, 79, fashion designer whose elegant yet understated clothes were known for their distinctly American look; Preston, CT, June 12.
Brown, J. Carter, 67, director of Washington, D.C.'s National Gallery of Art, 1969-92; Boston, MA, June 17.
Buck, Jack, 77, sports broadcaster who was the longtime voice of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team; St. Louis, MO, June 18.
Clooney, Rosemary, 74, 1950s pop singer and actress who spent the latter part of her career as a jazz stylist; Beverly Hills, CA, June 29.
Davenport, Willie, 59, U.S. athlete who won the 110-meter high hurdles at the 1968 Summer Olympics and competed as a bobsledder in the 1980 Winter Olympics; Chicago, IL, June 17.
Entwistle, John, 57, bass player for the British rock group the Who since the group's founding in 1964; Las Vegas, NV, June 27.
Gotti, John, 61, flamboyant New York City mobster known as the "Dapper Don" and, until the U.S. government finally managed to get him convicted of murder and racketeering in 1992, as the "Teflon Don"; Springfield, MO, June 10.
Gray, Dolores, 78, actress of 1950s musical theater and film; New York, NY, June 26.
Jordan, June, 65, African American poet, essayist, children's book author and social activist; Berkeley, CA, June 14.
Kile, Darryl, 33, ace pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals baseball team; Chicago, IL, June 22.
Landers, Ann, 83, pen name of Eppie Lederer, whose advice column appeared in more than 1,200 newspapers worldwide with 90 million readers daily; Chicago, IL, June 22.
Melin, Arthur, 77, co-founder of Wham-O, the company that introduced the Hula-Hoop, and marketed Frisbees; Costa Mesa, CA, June 28.
Ramone, Dee Dee, 49, bassist and songwriter who was one the founding members of the pioneering punk rock group the Ramones; Los Angeles, CA, June 5.
Wasserman, Lew, 89, for decades one of the most powerful men in Hollywood as president and later chairman of MCA, which, largely through his efforts, grew into an entertainment empire that included Universal Studios; Beverly Hills, CA, June 3.
Whitehead, Robert, 86, for decades one of Broadway's most prolific producers of serious drama; Pound Ridge, NY, June 15.
SPECIAL FEATURE: PUERTO RICO: 50 Years As a Commonwealth
By Joe Gustaitis
On July 25, 2002, Puerto Rico marks 50 years as a U.S. commonwealth. By achieving this status in 1952, after centuries of colonial occupation by Spain and then the United States, Puerto Rico acquired a large measure of independence and self-rule. But many have viewed commonwealth status as far from ideal, with some seeking statehood for this Caribbean island and a small number seeking complete independence.
Puerto Rico was claimed for Spain by Christopher Columbus in 1493 and colonized 15 years later by Ponce de Leon, who gave the island its name, from the Spanish for "rich port." At the time, the island was inhabited by the Taino people, who subsequently died out, as a result of disease, mistreatment, and massacres. In its early days the colonial capital of San Juan was attacked by the British and the Dutch, but the Spanish managed to hold on.
Rebellions flared up in the early 19th century, and during the Lares rebellion of 1868 Puerto Rico was briefly proclaimed a republic. Spain responded with reforms--slavery was abolished in 1873, and in 1876 the island secured representation in the Spanish parliament. In 1897 the Spanish allowed Puerto Rico its own legislature, but this body had barely gotten off the ground when the Spanish-American War broke out.
U.S. troops landed on the island in July 1898. Though skirmishes like Theodore Roosevelt's charge with the Rough Riders up San Juan Hill have become famous, there was actually only limited resistance to the U.S. arrival. The population apparently saw the Americans as bearers of freedom and prosperity. In December the Treaty of Paris gave the U.S. jurisdiction over Puerto Rico as well as other Spanish possessions, including the Philippines and Guam.
But Puerto Ricans' hopes were disappointed. At first, a military governor ruled the island. In 1900 Puerto Rico got a legislature and a civilian governor, but the latter, along with the upper house of the legislature, were appointed by the U.S. president. In addition, all legislation was subject to approval by the U.S. Congress. A new law in 1917 gave Puerto Ricans U.S. citizenship and allowed election of both houses of the legislature, but the governor was still appointed and had veto power.
Under U.S. rule, the island's infrastructure and sanitation and health conditions improved, but not enough to keep up with the fast-growing population. U.S. corporations took over land formerly used for farming, and the economy became dangerously dependent on one crop, sugar. When sugar prices fell during the Great Depression of the 1930s, Puerto Rico suffered heavily. Nationalist feeling grew, and anti-U.S. demonstrations broke out. When police attempted to break up a Nationalist Party parade in 1937, 19 people were killed.
In 1938 the Popular Democratic Party, headed by Luis Muñoz Marín, won a majority in the legislature; he initiated a program called Operation Bootstrap, which had considerable success in raising living standards. In 1947, Congress granted Puerto Rico the right to elect its own governor, and Muñoz won the post a year later. But nationalist sentiment remained strong. Radical nationalists attempted to assassinate President Harry Truman on November 1, 1950, and made an attack on the floor of the House of Representatives in 1954, wounding five members of Congress.
With Munoz as an advocate, Puerto Ricans won the right to draft their own constitution, so long as it preserved the essential relations between Puerto Rico and the United States. Puerto Rican voters approved it overwhelmingly on March 3, 1952. In July of the same year, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico was officially proclaimed.
Puerto Rico's relationship to the United States remained a subject of debate. A plebiscite in 1967 found that while over 60% favored continuation of commonwealth status, 39% wanted statehood; fewer than 1% supported independence. In a 1993 referendum support for statehood grew to 46%, with 4% now favoring independence.
In December 1998, Puerto Rican voters were asked to choose between 1) statehood, 2) independence, 3) "free association," 4) commonwealth, and 5)"none of the above." "None of the above" received 50.3%, a majority of the vote, largely because the pro-commonwealth Popular Democratic Party believed the wording of the commonwealth option implied colonial status and advised its voters not to choose it. Statehood was selected by 46.5% of the voters and independence drew 2.5%.
More recently, while the status of Puerto Rico remained unresolved, controversy heated up over U.S. use of the outlying Puerto Rican island of Vieques for bombing exercises. Nearly 200 protestors were arrested in June 2000 for demonstrating in the bombing zone. A year later, the Bush administration announced it would discontinue these exercises in May 2003, but critics continued to call for immediate action.
SCIENCE IN THE NEWS
Jurassic Fossil Gives Clues About Ancient Reptile
By Czarina Agojo
Scientists are excited over vomit. A fossilized vomit specimen was discovered in February 2002, giving paleontologists clues about the diet of ichthyosaurs-marine reptiles that lived during the Jurassic era, 160 million years ago, along with dinosaurs. They were comparable in size to dolphins and had the largest eyes (relative to body size) ever recorded for an animal, alive or extinct.
The vomit contains shell remnants of belemnites, extinct squid-like cephalopods that existed in the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. The shells are marked with etchings thought to have been caused by the ichthyosaur's digestive fluids. Scientists concluded that much like today's sperm whale, ichthyosaurs ingested their prey and expelled unpalatable parts of it in order to prevent indigestion.
This is the oldest fossil proven to be vomit. Professor Peter Doyle and Dr. Jason Wood from Britain's Open University planned to submit their findings for publication.
Conservationists Ecstatic as Condor Egg Hatches in California
A wild California condor hatched from an egg on April 11, 2002 in Ventura County, CA. Condors are scavenger birds -- the largest recorded in North America -- with bald orange heads and black feathers. Historically, they were widespread throughout the continent. However, due to factors such as loss of habitat, disappearing food supply, lead poisoning, and poaching, their numbers steadily dwindled during the 19th and into the 20th century. Now, condors in North America are almost entirely restricted to California and Arizona. When the condor population hit a low of 22 birds in 1982, a captive breeding plan, the California Condor Recovery Program, was initiated by several organizations including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Peregrine Fund. Its goal is to establish two or more stable condor populations in the wild, consisting of 150 birds with at least 15 breeding pairs, by releasing those that have been bred in captivity.
The recent birth was a huge step towards this goal. The chick's parents, both bred in captivity, had previously hatched an egg at the Los Angeles Zoo, but the chick died in a few days when another female condor attacked it. Things look more promising this time around. Both parents appear protective and attentive, sharing incubation duties and feeding the baby regularly. Conservation officials are optimistic that despite their inexperience, the parents will nurture their offspring successfully. If they do, this would suggest that captive-bred condors have the instincts and abilities to live and reproduce in the wild.
Chronology -- Events of June 2002
Bush Proposes Cabinet-level Security Dept. - On June 6, in a televised address, Pres. George W. Bush proposed creation of a cabinet-level Dept. of Homeland Security combining 22 existing federal agencies and charged with responsibility for preventing terrorist attacks. Agencies transferred to the new department would include the Coast Guard, Secret Service, Immigration and Naturalization Service, and Customs Service. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Central Intelligence Agency would remain outside, but the new department would review their intelligence. Bush's proposal required approval by Congress, where they appeared to have bipartisan support.
On June 6, Coleen Rowley, the lawyer in the Minneapolis FBI office who had written a letter in May protesting actions by FBI higher-ups in Washington, testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee. She said reports from FBI field offices often got swallowed up by a many-tiered hierarchical structure in Washington. She also testified that Washington agents had prevented efforts by Minneapolis agents to obtain a warrant to search the computer of Zacarias Moussaoui, an alleged conspirator arrested in August. She said his computer contained the phone number of one of the principal Sept. 11 hijackers and data on the configuration of airplane cockpits.
The Justice Dept. said June 10 that it had thwarted a plot to explode a radioactive bomb in the U.S. Attorney Gen. John Ashcroft announced that on May 8, at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, authorities had arrested an American citizen, Jose Padilla, who now called himself Abdullah al-Muhajir. The plot was described by Abu Zubaydah, an al-Qaeda leader captured in March; he reportedly told interrogators that several al-Qaeda members had proposed in December 2001 to detonate a so-called "dirty bomb." U.S. agents then tracked Padilla from Pakistan to Chicago.
Accounting Firm Guilty of Obstructing Justice - Arthur Andersen, heretofore one of the nation's "Big 5" accounting firms, was convicted of obstruction of justice by a federal jury, June 15, after 10 days of deliberation. Andersen, once the accounting firm for the now-bankrupt Enron Corp., had been charged with hindering a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into Enron, in part by destroying thousands of records related to its Enron audit.
On June 13, in a controversial move, U.S. Federal District Judge Melinda Harmon had responded to a question from jurors by stating that they could convict the firm even if they could not agree on which individual Andersen employee(s) acted with corrupt intent. While the destruction of documents assumed a central role in the prosecution case, several jurors subsequently said they had reached their verdict because of finding that an Andersen partner and lawyer, Nancy Temple, prescribed crucial deletions from a memo by David Duncan, Andersen's chief auditor for Enron. Duncan had pleaded guilty in April to obstructing justice.
After the Enron scandal broke, many of Andersen's clients had deserted it, and Andersen's U.S. payroll had shrunk from 27,000 to 10,000. After the verdict, which Andersen said it would appeal, the company voluntarily agreed to relinquish auditing public companies in the U.S., effectively ending its 89 years in business.
Ventura Won't Seek Reelection - Jesse Ventura, who was elected governor of Minnesota in 1998 as an independent, announced June 18 that he would not seek a 2nd term. The outspoken former wrestler, who had ridden a wave of discontent to win the governorship, became frustrated by a hostile legislature and a $2 billion budget deficit, as well as by what he considered media intrusions into his family's privacy.
WorldCom Admits $3.8 Billion Cash-Flow Error - WorldCom, the nation's 2nd-largest long-distance communications carrier, announced June 25 that it had overstated its cash flow by $3.8 billion during the past 15 months. WorldCom operated a network for Internet, data, and telephone services in 65 countries. Its MCI unit, acquired in 1998, had 20 million U.S. long-distance customers. Its auditor was Arthur Andersen. Chief Executive Bernard Ebbers, who owed the company $366 million for loans and loan guarantees, had resigned in April. In May, as Enron struggled to refinance $30 billion in debt, its credit was reduced to junk-bond status. In 6 months its stock had lost more than 90% of its value. On June 25 WorldCom announced that it had dismissed its chief financial officer, Scott Sullivan, and would lay off 17,000 of its 85,000 employees. The Securities and Exchange Commission, June 26, filed fraud charges against the company, Pres. Bush called Enron's overstatement of earnings "outrageous" and said responsible people would be held accountable.
Appeals Court Calls Pledge of Allegiance Unconstitutional - A 3-judge panel of the U.S Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled 2-1, June 26, in San Francisco, that recitation in schools of the Pledge of Allegiance was unconstitutional because its use of the phrase "under God," added by Congress in 1954, violated the First Amendment prohibition against "laws respecting establishment of religion." Under the ruling, which was stayed pending appeal, schools in the 9 Western states covered by the circuit would be barred from reciting the pledge. The lawsuit was brought by Michael Newdow, an atheist whose daughter attended a California public school.
Supreme Court OK's Vouchers - In a major decision on June 27, the U.S. Supreme Court, ruling 5-4, upheld a six-year-old program in Cleveland, OH, providing for the use of public money to help parents pay tuition in nonpublic schools. According to 1999-2000 statistics, some 3,700 of the district's 75,000 children were using vouchers of up to $2,250 each to attend nonpublic schools, 96% of which were religious schools. The Cleveland program also provided for magnet public schools which parents could choose. A federal appeals court in December 2000 had stricken down the program, concluding that it had the "impermissible effect of promoting sectarian schools" in violation of the First Amendment religious establishment clause. The Supreme Court's majority opinion, written by Chief Justice William Rehnquist, concluded that the Ohio program was "entirely neutral with respect to religion" in that it allowed "genuine choice among options public and private, secular and religious."
The ruling appeared to move the focus of the school choice controversy back toward the states, where more voucher plans might be considered in legislatures and referenda, leaving state courts to decide whether they were permissible under the state constitution. A majority of respondents in recent public opinion polls have opposed the concept, which is strongly opposed by public school teachers' unions, and about half of the state legislatures have previously considered and rejected voucher proposals. Nevertheless, the decision remained a major victory for voucher proponents and was seen by some as a step toward expanded use of public funds for charitable and other programs by religions.
In another 5-4 decision, June 27, the Supreme Court allowed random drug testing in public school for a wide variety of extra-curricular activities, not just for athletics as had been previously been authorized.
As Terrorism Against Israel Continues, the U.S. Repudiates Arafat - Israeli forces, sweeping through Nablus, in the West Bank, claimed June 2 that they had found a large explosives factory in a refugee camp. They raided other cities in the following days. Palestinian Authority chairman Yasir Arafat met June 4 with CIA Director George Tenet in Ramallah and presented a plan to reform the Palestinian security forces. Meanwhile, on June 5 a Palestinian militant stopped his car next to a bus in northern Israel and detonated explosives that killed himself and 17 Israelis, including 13 soldiers. Israel responded the next day by once again surrounding Arafat's compound in Ramallah, pounding it in a new assault, and leaving 2 people dead.
Pres. George W. Bush met with Prime Min. Ariel Sharon of Israel at the White House, June 10, and told reporters, "Israel has a right to defend herself." On June 18, another suicide bomber detonated an explosion on a bus in Jerusalem, killing himself and 19 others; in a 2nd bombing in Jerusalem, June 19, a bomber killed himself and 7 people at a bus stop. Palestinian gunmen, June 20, killed 5 Israelis in a raid on the settlement of Itamar. The next day, Israeli forces began occupying portions of the West Bank, and the Israeli Security Cabinet adopted a policy to seize and hold territory until the bombing stopped.
In a major speech June 24, Bush declared for the first time that the U.S. would not support creation of an independent Palestine until Arafat departed as the Palestinian leader. Bush also called for reforms by Palestinians, including free elections and an end to terrorism and corruption. The next day, Arafat, while endorsing these calls, brushed aside the repudiation of his leadership, stating that the Palestinian people would decide who their leaders would be. On June 26, the Palestinian Authority announced it would hold elections for president and legislative positions in January 2003.
Britain Celebrates Queen's Jubilee - Britain in June celebrated the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, who had succeeded to the throne on the death of her father, George VI, in 1952. On June 1, in a concert on the lawn of Buckingham Palace, 2 orchestras played classical music. On June 2, festivities were disrupted when a fire in the palace forced the evacuation of hundreds of people. A June 3 concert featured performances by Sir Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, and other stars. The final day of celebrations, June 4, included marching bands, a carnival at the palace, and a wave by the queen from the balcony to 1.2 million cheering admirers.
Tensions Between India and Pakistan Ease - After appearing to be near the brink of nuclear war in May, India and Pakistan moved toward easing their confrontation over Kashmir. In speeches on June 4 at a regional conference in Kazakhstan, Pres. Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan and Prime Min. Atal Bihari Vajpayee of India blamed each other for the crisis. Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin met with both and failed to find common ground. On June 8, however, the Indian government applauded a promise by Musharraf to end infiltration by Muslim militants across the Line of Control into the Indian province of Jammu and Kashmir. And on June 10, India lifted a ban on Pakistani commercial aircraft flying over India and withdrew naval vessels from Pakistan's coast.
American Hostage Killed in Philippines - Martin Burnham, a U.S. missionary captured in the Philippines by the Abu Sayyaf Muslim group in May 2001, was fatally shot June 7 during a rescue attempt by Filipino soldiers on Mindanao. The victim's wife, Gracia Burnham, was wounded but rescued; a Filipino nurse being held hostage was killed. As part of the worldwide struggle against terrorism, the Bush administration had sent weapons to the Filipino army, and on Jan. 31 U.S. troops had begun arriving in the islands to provide anti-terror training.
Grand Council OKs Plan for Afghan Government - Delegates to a loya jirga, or grand council, assembled in the Afghan capital of Kabul June 10 to establish a constitutional framework for a permanent government for the war-ravaged country. The 86-year-old former king, Mohammad Zahir Shah, and former Pres. Burhanuddin Rabbani both threw their support for president behind Hamid Karzai, the interim leader, and on June 13, with Zahir presiding, Karzai was elected president overwhelmingly, with 1,295 of 1,575 ballots. In a first for Afghanistan, one of his opponents in the voting was a woman. On June 24, a new cabinet, put together with difficulty among the various factions, was sworn in.
Terrorists Strike Again in Pakistan - A car bombing in front of the U.S. consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, June 13 claimed at least 11 lives.
Kennedy Kin Convicted of Murder - After 4 days of deliberation, a Norwalk, CT, jury June 7 convicted Michael Skakel, 41, nephew of the late Sen. Robert Kennedy, in the 1975 murder of Martha Moxley, his 15-year-old neighbor. Moxley had been bludgeoned to death on her family's Greenwich, CT, estate with a golf club owned by the Skakel family, but investigators failed in initial efforts to construct a solid case against either Michael Skakel or a number of other suspects. When, 25 years later, Skakel was first charged, he was indicted as a juvenile, but a juvenile court in 2001 ordered that he be charged as an adult.
Wildfires Ravage Large Areas of Western U.S. - Wildfires in June consumed large acreages in Colorado, Arizona, California, and other western states. A welding accident in northern Los Angeles County on June 6 started one fire, which destroyed 7 homes and forced 1,100 people to flee their homes. On June 8, 4,000 were evacuated from Glenwood Springs, in western Colorado, as a fire threatened. As winds rose to 40 mph and with temperatures in the 90s, fires spread throughout Colorado June 9. On June 10, the largest of 8 fires, which had burned 75,000 acres, was within 50 miles of Denver; clouds of smoke rose 20,000 feet and covered the city. As of June 10, 22 major fires in 7 states had burned 780 square miles.
On June 15, an 18-year veteran of the Forest Service, Terry Lynn Barton, said she had accidentally started the biggest Colorado fire - which had now consumed 100,000 acres - when she burned a letter from her estranged husband. She had reported the fire herself, claiming at first to have discovered it at a campsite. On June 16, several charges were filed against her. Gradually, the fire near Denver was contained.
A major fire in Arizona began when a lost hiker started a small fire as a signal. A nearby fire began June 18 and by June 21 had consumed 120,000 acres and driven 8,000 from their homes. The fires merged June 23. By June 24, this fire, having consumed 330,000 acres, was moving close to Show Low, population 8,000, now evacuated. Pres. Bush toured the fire area June 25 and met with evacuees at Eagar, AZ.
On June 30, Leonard Gregg, 29, a part-time fireman, was charged with deliberately setting the Rodeo wildfire, which combined with another blaze, became the largest in Arizona's history. Gregg was arraigned on charges of setting two fires on June 18 near his home in Cibecue, on the Fort Apache Indian reservation.
U.S. Catholic Bishops Debate Sex-Abuse Scandal - Roman Catholic cardinals and bishops from across the U.S. met in Dallas, TX, in June to discuss what to do about the scandal in the Church relating to sexual abuse of minors by priests.
On June 12, more than a dozen victims of abuse met with Church leaders, described their experiences, and demanded that the bishops support a zero-tolerance policy for abusers.
Three men and a woman spoke to the bishops June 13, describing how their lives had been devastated by the abuse and by subsequent ill treatment by the Church. Bishop Wilton Gregory of Belleville, IL, president of the conference, said the bishops were responsible for the tragedy, for allowing guilty priests to remain in the ministry and reassigning them. The bishops June 14 approved a new set of policies for all dioceses, which called for removing from active duties any priest found to have abused a minor and reporting all accusations of abuse to civil authorities. An outside review board headed by Gov. Frank Keating of Oklahoma would monitor compliance. The new policies, in order to become official church law, would require approval by the Vatican, which said it would not comment until the policies had been studied. Bishop Gregory said, "We bishops apologize to anyone harmed" by a priest, "and for our tragically slow response."
On June 21, a priest was arrested in Texas on charges that he had raped a woman in Brooklyn in 2000 who had sought his advice about annulling her marriage. The priest, Cyriacus Udegbulem, had been dismissed in Brooklyn but had found work in a church and hospital in Laredo, TX.
The Triple Crown bid of Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner War Emblem all but ended as the horse stumbled out of the gate at the 134th Belmont Stakes, in Elmont, NY, on June 8. Little-known Sarava, a 70-1 long shot, won the race by half a length over Medaglia d'Oro. Sunday Break finished third. War Emblem faded to eighth, nearly 20 lengths back.
In the final of the French Open, June 8, Serena Williams defeated older sister Venus Williams, 7-5, 6-3, to win her second Grand Slam singles title (U.S. Open 1999). In the WTA tour rankings announced June 10, the Williams sisters became the first siblings ever to hold the top two spots (Venus, #1, Serena, #2). Jennifer Capriati was ranked third.
Lennox Lewis successfully defended his heavyweight crown (WBC, IBF) against former champ Mike Tyson at the Pyramid in Memphis, TN, on June 8. Lewis dominated the contest, finally knocking Tyson out 2 minutes and 25 seconds into the eighth round.
At 24, South Korea's Se Ri Pak became the youngest woman to win four majors, when she took the LPGA Championship at the DuPont Country Club in Wilmington, DE, on June 9. Pak came from four strokes back to post a 3-stroke win over Beth Daniel.
The Los Angeles Lakers won their third NBA Championship in a row, sweeping the New Jersey Nets with a 113-107 victory in Game Four of the NBA Finals on June 12, in East Rutherford, NJ. Center Shaquille O'Neal won his third consecutive Finals MVP Award.
With a 3-1 victory in Game Five, June 13, the Detroit Red Wings took their third Stanley Cup in six years, defeating the Carolina Hurricanes, four games to one. Defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom won the Conn Smythe Trophy (MVP in the playoffs). On June 25, future Hall of Famer Dominik Hasek announced his retirement after winning his first Stanley Cup ever. During his 21-year career Hasek also won six Vezina Trophies as the NHL's best goalie, two Hart Trophies (NHL MVP), and an Olympic gold medal in 1998, playing for the Czech Republic.
On June 16, Tiger Woods won the U.S. Open, held on the Black Course at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale, NY. Woods, who led wire-to-wire, finished three strokes ahead of Phil Mickelson. Woods was the first player since Jack Nicklaus in 1972 to win The Masters and the U.S. Open in the same year. It was the second U.S. Open win for Woods, winner of seven of the last 11 majors played, and the eighth major victory of his career.
The Houston Rockets made 7'5" Chinese star Yao Ming the first pick in the NBA draft on June 26. Former Duke players Jay Williams (Chicago Bulls), and Mike Dunleavy (Golden State Warriors), were the second and third picks.
In its best World Cup showing since 1930, the U.S. team made it to the quarterfinals of the 2002 World Cup, losing to Germany, 1-0, on June 21. Last in the 1998 World Cup, the U.S. was the surprise team of the tournament, defeating Portugal 3-2 in the opening round, tying co-host South Korea, 1-1, and upsetting Mexico 2-0, in the second round. In the final on June 30, Brazil defeated Germany, 2-0, to win a record fifth title. Turkey took third with a 3-2 win over co-host South Korea on June 29.
Annika Sorenstam, won the ShopRite LPGA Classic on June 30. This was the sixth win out of 12 events for the 31 year old Swede.
The 2002 Tony Awards were held at Radio City Music Hall, in New York City, on Sunday, June 2. Below is a list of winners:
Play: The Goat or Who Is Sylvia?"
Musical: "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Book of a Musical: "Urinetown: The Musical," Greg Kotis
Original Score: "Urinetown: The Musical," Mark Hollmann (music), Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis (lyrics)
Play Revival: "Private Lives"
Musical Revival: "Into the Woods"
Special Theatrical Event: "Elaine Stritch at Liberty"
Actor in a Play: Alan Bates, "Fortune's Fool"
Actress in a Play: Lindsay Duncan, "Private Lives"
Actor in a Musical: John Lithgow, "Sweet Smell of Success"
Actress in a Musical: Sutton Foster, "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Featured Actor in a Play: Frank Langella, "Fortune's Fool"
Featured Actress in a Play: Katie Finneran, "Noises Off"
Featured Actor in a Musical: Shuler Hensley, "Oklahoma!"
Featured Actress in a Musical: Harriet Harris, "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Scenery: Tim Hatley, "Private Lives"
Costumes: Martin Pakledinaz, "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Lighting: Brian MacDevitt, "Into the Woods"
Direction of a Play: Mary Zimmerman, "Metamorphoses"
Direction of a Musical: John Rando, "Urinetown: The Musical"
Choreography: Rob Ashford, "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Orchestration: Doug Besterman and Ralph Burns, "Thoroughly Modern Millie"
Special Awards: Julie Harris and Robert Whitehead
Regional Theater: Williamstown Theater Festival
Offbeat News Stories
By Mark Schepp
Toy Yoda? - Double-entendres involving Hooters waitresses are nothing new-until an intergalactic Zen guru and a Japanese car company are thrown in. Jodee Berry, 27, claims Hooters promised her a new Toyota, but instead of a new car she received a "toy Yoda" doll. Berry was allegedly promised the car for winning a month-long beer-selling contest last April at the Panama City Hooters where she worked. In May 2001, Berry was told she had won the contest, and was blindfolded and led out to the parking lot, where she expected to see her new wheels. But when she opened her eyes, the only thing in the parking space was a 16-inch replica of the little green Jedi master from the Star Wars films. The doll is valued at $40, and comes with a free lightsaber. Berry claimed she had been purposely misled and filed a lawsuit. Jared Blair, the Hooters manager, said the entire contest was an April Fools' joke. But Hooters and Berry settled out of court in May. David Noll, Berry's attorney, wouldn't disclose settlement details, but said Berry could go to a dealership and "pick out whatever type of Toyota she wants."
It Had Nothing to Do With the Octopus - Detroit Tigers' relief pitcher Matt Anderson was diagnosed with a rare injury a few hours after taking part in an octopus-throwing contest at Comerica Park. Reporters were told that Anderson, who had just been on the disabled list with a muscle strain for about three weeks, had shredded a muscle in his right armpit. Tigers' team trainers and clubhouse officials, however, were adamant that Anderson's injury had nothing to do with tossing the 1-to-2 pound cephalopods. The Octopus-Throw was part of a contest to win tickets to Game 2 of the NHL Western Conference Finals between the Detroit Red Wings and Colorado Avalanche. It's a Detroit playoff tradition to throw octopuses on the ice after a goal is scored. Lost in the hubbub over Anderson (who didn't make the finals) is the fact that the tickets were won by Tim Fogarty of Allen Park, MI. His toss of 103 feet, 7 inches easily outdistanced runner-up Brad Bowers' (Arlington, TX) throw of 88 feet, 8 inches.
75 Years Ago in the WORLD ALMANAC - Chronology July 1927
Links of the Month
Edward A. Thomas, Editor in Chief
What is the common link between Princess Diana, Frank Morgan (the Wizard in "The Wizard of Oz"), Olivia de Havilland (Melanie in "Gone With the Wind"), Olympian Carl Lewis, and dancer Twyla Tharp? Stumped? All of them were born on July 1. At www.biography.com, you can learn about their stories, as well as about many other celebrities, from Abigail Adams to Frank Zappa.
It's summer in the United States, and many people will be heading to the mountains to get back to nature. At www.thebackpacker.com, a site dedicated to backpacking with beginning issues up to advanced topics, you can check out trails in all 50 states, get information about national parks, learn what to take with you, and even get reviews of various products used by backpackers.
I'll admit I was never very good at doing tricks with my yo-yo, but I grew up with kids who were, and well, those kids grow up and keep yo-yoing. At the American Yo-Yo Association www.pd.net/yoyo you can learn about the history of the yo-yo (do they really date back to Greece, 500 BC?), see if there is a yo-yo club near you, and get information on collections.
As I sit writing up potential websites in my cool (temperature-wise) office, it is over 90 degrees outside. Know where I'd rather be? In a pisi'na. What's that? It's a swimming pool, in Greek. At travlang.com/languages you can listen to and learn useful words and phrases in over 100 languages, from Arabic to Zulu, (In case you ever need the information, "Ble mae'r toiled?" is Welsh for "Where is the bathroom?")
In 1869, a 10 1/2 foot stone figure, was unearthed in upstate New York, and declared to be a fossilized man. Known as the Cardiff Giant, it was put on display and attracted a great deal of attention. Alas, it was just a bit of humbug; the so-called giant was a hoax. At www.museumofhoaxes.com you can read about several hundred years of hoaxes, and see some great April Fool's Day pranks that have been played through the ages. By the way, you can view the Cardiff Giant on display at the Farmer's Museum in Cooperstown, NY.
Useless website of the month: Picture yourself in plastic: www.reasonablyclever.com
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