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Wednesday 16 December 2020 Calendar with holidays, observances and special days

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Holidays and observances

Events

  • 1979 – Libya joins four other OPEC nations in raising crude oil prices, which has an immediate, dramatic effect on the United States.
  • 1978 – Cleveland, Ohio becomes the first major American city to default on its financial obligations since the Great Depression.
  • 1947 – William Shockley, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain build the first practical point-contact transistor.
  • 1937 – Theodore Cole and Ralph Roe attempt to escape from the American federal prison on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay; neither is ever seen again.
  • 1912 – First Balkan War: The Royal Hellenic Navy defeats the Ottoman Navy at the Battle of Elli.
  • 1907 – The American Great White Fleet begins its circumnavigation of the world.
  • 1903 – Taj Mahal Palace & Tower hotel in Bombay first opens its doors to guests.
  • 1880 – Outbreak of the First Boer War between the Boer South African Republic and the British Empire.
  • 1864 – American Civil War: Battle of Nashville: Major General George Thomas's Union forces defeat Lieutenant General John Bell Hood's Confederate Army of Tennessee.
  • 1863 – American Civil War: Joseph E. Johnston replaces Braxton Bragg as commander of the Confederate Army of Tennessee.
  • 1850 – The Charlotte Jane and the Randolph bring the first of the Canterbury Pilgrims to Lyttelton, New Zealand.
  • 1811 – The first two in a series of four severe earthquakes occur in the vicinity of New Madrid, Missouri.
  • 1773 – American Revolution: Boston Tea Party: Members of the Sons of Liberty disguised as Mohawk Indians dump hundreds of crates of tea into Boston harbor as a protest against the Tea Act.

Births

  • 1987 – Hallee Hirsh, American actress. Hallee Leah Hirsh (born December 16, 1987) is an American actress perhaps best known for her roles as Mattie on JAG, Daley in the children's series Flight 29 Down, and as the adolescent and young adult Rachel Greene on ER.
  • 1983 – Frankie Ballard, American singer-songwriter and guitarist. Records, and has charted eight singles on the Hot Country Songs charts.
  • 1983 – Kelenna Azubuike, American basketball player. Kelenna David Azubuike (born 16 December 1983) is a British former professional basketball player and currently the Golden State Warriors television color analyst on NBC Sports Bay Area.
  • 1982 – Antrel Rolle, American football player. Antrel Rocelious Rolle (born December 16, 1982) is a former American football safety of the National Football League (NFL).
  • 1981 – Krysten Ritter, American actress, musician, and model. She also appeared as Jane Margolis on the AMC drama series Breaking Bad (2009–2010) as well as the 2019 Netflix film El Camino, and Chloe on the ABC comedy series Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 (2012–2013).
  • 1979 – Jessie Ward, American wrestler and producer. Jessie Lynn Whitney (née Ward; born December 16, 1979) is an American television producer and retired professional wrestler.
  • 1979 – Luke Harper, American wrestler. Jonathan Huber (born December 16, 1979) is an American professional wrestler and actor.
  • 1976 – Jen Golbeck, American computer scientist and academic. Golbeck was director of the University of Maryland Human–Computer Interaction Lab from 2011 to 2014.
  • 1973 – Jason Molina, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (d. 2013), was an American musician and singer-songwriter. Raised in northern Ohio, he came to prominence performing and recording as Songs: Ohia, both in solo projects and with a rotating cast of musicians in the late 1990s.
  • 1973 – Scott Storch, American songwriter and producer, founded Storch Music Company. Scott Spencer Storch (born December 16, 1973) is an American record producer and songwriter.
  • 1972 – Charles Gipson, American baseball player. Charles Wells Gipson Jr. (born December 16, 1972) is a former Major League Baseball outfielder for the Seattle Mariners (1998-2002), New York Yankees (2003), Tampa Bay Devil Rays (2004), and Houston Astros (2005).
  • 1972 – Travis Morrison, American singer-songwriter. Travis Morrison (born December 16, 1972) is an American musician and web developer from the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., United States.
  • 1971 – Michael McCary, American R&B singer, was sometimes known as Mike Bass).
  • 1969 – Adam Riess, American astrophysicist, astronomer, and academic Nobel Prize laureate. Adam Guy Riess (born December 16, 1969) is an American astrophysicist and Bloomberg Distinguished Professor at Johns Hopkins University and the Space Telescope Science Institute and is known for his research in using supernovae as cosmological probes.
  • 1969 – Dmitri Tymoczko, American composer and theorist. As a theorist, he has published more than two dozen articles dealing with topics related to contemporary tonality, including scales, voice leading, and functional harmonic norms.
  • 1968 – Lalah Hathaway, American singer-songwriter, pianist, and producer. Eulaulah Donyll "Lalah" Hathaway (born December 16, 1968) is an American singer.
  • 1966 – Clifford Robinson, American basketball player. Clifford Robinson is the name of:
  • 1965 – Melanie Sloan, American lawyer and activist. Melanie Sloan (born 16 December 1965) is an attorney, former counsel for the House Judiciary Committee, and the former Executive Director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonprofit government ethics and accountability watchdog group.
  • 1964 – Billy Ripken, American baseball player and sportscaster. William Oliver Ripken (born December 16, 1964), nicknamed Billy The Kid, is an American former infielder in Major League Baseball from 1987–1998 for the Baltimore Orioles (1987–92, '96), Texas Rangers (1993–94, '97), Cleveland Indians (1995), and Detroit Tigers (1998).
  • 1963 – Benjamin Bratt, American actor and producer. From 1995, he extended his global recognition with his role of NYPD Detective Rey Curtis on the NBC drama series Law & Order (for which he was nominated for the 1999 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series).
  • 1963 – Cathy Johnston-Forbes, American golfer. Cathy Johnston-Forbes (born December 16, 1963) is an American professional golfer.
  • 1963 – James Mangold, American director, producer, and screenwriter. He also directed 3:10 to Yuma (2007).
  • 1962 – William Perry, American football player and wrestler, was the United States Secretary of Defense from February 3, 1994, to January 23, 1997, under President Bill Clinton. He also served as Deputy Secretary of Defense (1993–1994) and Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (1977–1981).
  • 1961 – Bill Hicks, American comedian and musician (d. 1994), was an American stand-up comedian, social critic, satirist and musician. His material—encompassing a wide range of social issues including religion, politics, and philosophy—was controversial and often steeped in dark comedy.
  • 1961 – Jon Tenney, American actor and director. He played Special Agent Fritz Howard in TNT's The Closer and continued in its spinoff Major Crimes.
  • 1961 – LaChanze, American actress, singer, and dancer. She won the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical in 2006 for her role in The Color Purple.
  • 1961 – Shane Black, American actor, director, and screenwriter. Shane Black (born December 16, 1961) is an American filmmaker and actor who has written such films as Lethal Weapon and Lethal Weapon 2, The Monster Squad, The Last Boy Scout, Last Action Hero and The Long Kiss Goodnight.
  • 1959 – Steve Mattsson, American author and illustrator. Steve Mattsson (born December 16, 1959) is an American comic book artist and writer.
  • 1958 – Bart Oates, American football player and lawyer. Bart Steven Oates (born December 16, 1958) is a former American football player in the National Football League (NFL) for the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers.
  • 1955 – Carol Browner, American lawyer and environmentalist, 8th Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. Carol Martha Browner (born December 16, 1955) is an American lawyer, environmentalist, and businesswoman, who served as director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy in the Obama administration from 2009 to 2011.
  • 1955 – Xander Berkeley, American actor and producer. His notable film roles include Todd Voight in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Agent Gibbs in Air Force One, Bowery Snax in Sid and Nancy, Dr.
  • 1953 – Rebecca Forstadt, American voice actress and screenwriter. Rebecca Lynn Forstadt (born December 16, 1953), also known as Reba West, is an American voice actress, best known for playing young female roles in various animated series.
  • 1951 – Mark Heard, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (d. 1992), was an American record producer, folk rock singer, and songwriter originally from Macon, Georgia, United States. Heard released 16 albums, and produced and performed with many other artists as well, such as Sam Phillips (a.k.a.
  • 1951 – Robben Ford, American guitarist and songwriter. Express and Yellowjackets, and has collaborated with Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, George Harrison, Larry Carlton, Rick Springfield, and Kiss.
  • 1950 – Claudia Cohen, American journalist (d. 2007), was an American gossip columnist, socialite, and television reporter. She is credited with putting the New York Post's Page Six gossip column on the map.
  • 1949 – Billy Gibbons, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer. William Frederick Gibbons (born December 16, 1949), professionally known as Billy Gibbons, and The Reverend Billy F.
  • 1945 – Patti Deutsch, American actress and comedian (d. 2017), was an American voice artist, actress and comedian, well-known as a recurring panelist on the 1970s game shows, Match Game and Tattletales.
  • 1944 – Don Meyer, American basketball player and coach (d. 2014), was an American college basketball coach who completed his career in 2010 as head coach of the men's team at Northern State University. He was once head coach at Hamline University and Lipscomb University.
  • 1944 – Jeff Kanew, American director and screenwriter. Jeffrey Roger Kanew (born December 16, 1944) is an American film director, screenwriter, film producer and film editor who early in his career made trailers]] for many films of the 1970s and is probably best known for directing the film Revenge of the Nerds (1984) and for editing Ordinary People.
  • 1943 – Steven Bochco, American screenwriter and producer, was a television producer and writer. He developed a number of television series, including Hill Street Blues, L.A.
  • 1942 – Donald Carcieri, American educator and politician, 73rd Governor of Rhode Island. Carcieri has worked as a manufacturing company executive, aid relief worker, bank executive, and teacher.
  • 1941 – Lesley Stahl, American journalist and actress. Lesley Rene Stahl (born December 16, 1941) is an American television journalist.
  • 1938 – Frank Deford, American journalist and author, was an American sportswriter and novelist. From 1980 until his death in 2017, he was a regular sports commentator on NPR's Morning Edition radio program.
  • 1937 – Edward Ruscha, American painter and photographer. Edward Joseph Ruscha IV (/ruːˈʃeɪ/, roo-SHAY; born December 16, 1937) is an American artist associated with the pop art movement.
  • 1937 – Joyce Bulifant, American actress. Joyce Collins Bulifant (born December 16, 1937) is an American television actress, notable for her cheerful, girlish voice with a Southern lilt.
  • 1936 – Morris Dees, American lawyer and activist, co-founded the Southern Poverty Law Center. Morris Seligman Dees Jr. (born December 16, 1936) is an American attorney who is known as the co-founder and former chief trial counsel for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), based in Montgomery, Alabama.
  • 1930 – Bill Brittain, American author (d. 2011), was an American writer. He is best known for work set in the fictional New England village of Coven Tree, including The Wish Giver, a Newbery Honor Book.
  • 1930 – Bill Young, American sergeant and politician (d. 2013). Charles William Young (December 16, 1930 – October 18, 2013), more commonly known as C.W.
  • 1930 – Sam Most, American flute player and saxophonist (d. 2013), was an American jazz flutist, clarinetist and tenor saxophonist, based in Los Angeles. He was "probably the first great jazz flutist", according to jazz historian Leonard Feather.
  • 1928 – Philip K. Dick, American philosopher and author (d. 1982), was an American writer known for his work in science fiction. He produced 44 published novels and approximately 121 short stories, most of which appeared in science fiction magazines during his lifetime.
  • 1928 – Terry Carter, American actor, director, and producer. Joe Broadhurst on the seven-year TV series McCloud and as Colonel Tigh on the original Battlestar Galactica.
  • 1927 – Randall Garrett, American author and poet (d. 1987), was an American science fiction and fantasy author. He was a contributor to Astounding and other science fiction magazines of the 1950s and 1960s.
  • 1926 – James McCracken, American tenor and actor (d. 1988), was an American operatic tenor. At the time of his death The New York Times stated that McCracken was "the most successful dramatic tenor yet produced by the United States and a pillar of the Metropolitan Opera during the 1960s and 1970s."
  • 1926 – Jeffrey Stone, American actor and screenwriter (d. 2012), was an American actor and voice-over artist. Stone was the model and inspiration for Prince Charming in the 1950 Walt Disney animated feature film, Cinderella.
  • 1924 – Nicolas Sidjakov, Latvian-American illustrator (d. 1993), was a Latvian-born Russian American commercial artist and illustrator.
  • 1923 – Ernst Florian Winter, Austrian-American historian and political scientist (d. 2014), was an Austrian-American historian and political scientist, the first director of the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna after World War II, and chairman of the International Council of the Austrian Service Abroad.
  • 1923 – Menahem Pressler, German-American pianist (Beaux Arts Trio). Menahem Pressler (born 16 December 1923, Magdeburg) is a German-born Israeli-American pianist.
  • 1922 – Cy Leslie, American record producer, founded Pickwick Records (d. 2008), was the founder of Pickwick Records, and the first president and founder of MGM/UA Home Entertainment Group. Pickwick Records aimed to make music more affordable, and carried such artists as Elvis Presley at various times.
  • 1917 – Pete T. Cenarrusa, American soldier, pilot, and politician, Secretary of State of Idaho (d. 2013), was an American Republican politician from Idaho. He served continuously for over half a century in elective office, first as a member of the Idaho Legislature and then as Secretary of State.
  • 1917 – Ruth Johnson Colvin, American author and educator, founded ProLiteracy Worldwide. Bush in December 2006.
  • 1907 – Barbara Kent, Canadian-born American film actress (d. 2011), was a Canadian-American film actress, prominent from the silent film era to the early talkies of the 1920s and 1930s. In 1925 Kent won the Miss Hollywood Beauty Pageant.
  • 1903 – Hardie Albright, American actor (d. 1975). Albright was born on December 16, 1903, in Charleroi, Pennsylvania, to traveling vaudeville performers.
  • 1901 – Margaret Mead, American anthropologist and author (d. 1978), was an American cultural anthropologist who featured frequently as an author and speaker in the mass media during the 1960s and 1970s. She earned her bachelor's degree at Barnard College in New York City and her MA and PhD degrees from Columbia University.
  • 1900 – Lucille Lortel, American actress and producer (d. 1999), was an American actress, artistic director, and theatrical producer. In the course of her career Lortel produced or co-produced nearly 500 plays, five of which were nominated for Tony Awards: As Is by William M.
  • 1895 – Marie Hall Ets, American author and illustrator (d. 1984), was an American writer and illustrator who is best known for children's picture books. She attended Lawrence College, and in 1918, Ets journeyed to Chicago where she became a social worker at the Chicago Commons, a settlement house on the northwest side of the city.
  • 1869 – Bertha Lamme Feicht, American electrical engineer (d. 1943), was an American engineer. In 1893, she became the first woman to receive a degree in engineering from the Ohio State University.
  • 1869 – Hristo Tatarchev, Bulgarian physician and activist, co-founded the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (d. 1952), was a Bulgarian doctor and revolutionary, the first leader of the revolutionary movement in Macedonia and Adrianople Thrace. He wrote a memoirs called The First Central Committee of the IMRO (1928).

Deaths

  • 2015 – George Earl Ortman, American painter and sculptor (b. 1926)
  • 2014 – Tim Cochran, American mathematician and academic (b. 1955)
  • 2013 – Marta Russell, American journalist, author, and activist (b. 1951)
  • 2013 – Ray Price, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1926)
  • 2012 – Elwood V. Jensen, American biologist and academic (b. 1920)
  • 2012 – Jake Adam York, American poet and academic (b. 1972)
  • 2011 – Robert Easton, American actor and screenwriter (b. 1930)
  • 2010 – Melvin E. Biddle, American soldier, Medal of Honor recipient (b. 1923)
  • 2009 – Roy E. Disney, American businessman (b. 1930)
  • 2007 – Dan Fogelberg, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1951)
  • 2006 – Stanford J. Shaw, American historian and academic (b. 1930)
  • 2005 – Ed Hansen, American director and screenwriter (b. 1937)
  • 2005 – John Spencer, American actor (b. 1946)
  • 2004 – Agnes Martin, American painter and educator (b. 1912)
  • 2004 – Deyda Hydara, Gambian journalist, co-founded The Point (b. 1946)
  • 2004 – Ted Abernathy, American baseball player (b. 1933)
  • 2003 – Gary Stewart, American singer-songwriter (b. 1945)
  • 2001 – Stefan Heym, German-American soldier and author (b. 1913)
  • 1998 – William Gaddis, American author and academic (b. 1922)
  • 1997 – Lillian Disney, American illustrator and philanthropist (b. 1899)
  • 1993 – Moses Gunn, American actor (b. 1929)
  • 1989 – Aileen Pringle, American actress (b. 1895)
  • 1989 – Lee Van Cleef, American actor (b. 1925)
  • 1985 – Paul Castellano, American mobster (b. 1915)
  • 1985 – Thomas Bilotti, American mobster (b. 1940)
  • 1983 – Debs Garms, American baseball player (b. 1907)
  • 1982 – Colin Chapman, English engineer and businessman, founded Lotus Cars (b. 1928)
  • 1980 – Colonel Sanders, American businessman, founded KFC (b. 1890)
  • 1980 – Hellmuth Walter, German-American engineer (b. 1900)
  • 1970 – Oscar Lewis, American anthropologist of Latin America (b. 1914)
  • 1952 – Robert Henry Best, American journalist (b. 1896)
  • 1949 – Sidney Olcott, Canadian-American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1873)
  • 1945 – Giovanni Agnelli, Italian businessman, founded the Fiat Automobile Company (b. 1866)
  • 1936 – Frank Eugene, American-German photographer and educator (b. 1865)
  • 1935 – Thelma Todd, American actress and comedian (b. 1905)
  • 1928 – Elinor Wylie, American poet and author (b. 1885)
  • 1917 – Frank Gotch, American wrestler (b. 1878)
  • 1908 – American Horse, American tribal leader and educator (b. 1840)
  • 1892 – Henry Yesler, American businessman and politician, 7th Mayor of Seattle (b. 1810)
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