August 26

Pope John Paul I was elected on the fourth ballot as Pope of the Roman Catholic Church in 1978. He succeeded Paul VI who had died on August 6. Born Albino Luciani in 1912, he became the first pope to take two names, John and Paul. His papacy only lasted only 33 days as he died on September 28 after a sudden illness. He was part of the “Year of the Three Popes,” the first of which had occurred in 1605.

The Hockey Hall of Fame opened in Toronto, Canada in 1961. It contains exhibits, memorabilia, and the Stanley Cup. A committee of players, coaches, and others meet annually to add new players to the Hall of Fame. Interactive exhibits include the “Be A Player Zone” where visitors can take shots at a computer simulation of a goaltender. Former Buffalo Sabre goaltender, Dominik Hasek will be inducted this November.

The Games of the XX Olympiad (1972 Summer Olympics) opened in Munich, Germany, and closed on September 11. The games were overshadowed by the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes by the Black September movement. The first Olympic mascot, Waldi, the daschund, was introduced at these games. The number of nations participating rose to 121. The Soviet Union won 99 total medals, the United States took 94, East Germany was next with 66 followed by the 40 medals won by West Germany. Highlights of the games included Mark Spitz winning seven gold medals in swimming, the performances of gymnast Olga Korbut, and the Soviet Union took the gold after a very controversial final game in basketball.

Birthdays Today

1910Mother Teresa, Macedonian-Indian missionary, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1997)
1934Tom Heinsohn, American basketball player, coach, and sportscaster
1935Geraldine Ferraro, American lawyer and politician (d. 2011)
1952Will Shortz, American puzzle creator and editor

Larry Moskal began his career as a Social Studies teacher in 1971. He graduated from the University of Buffalo with degrees in history and education. Larry taught Social Studies for the Ken-Ton School system, a suburban school system north of Buffalo, New York until 2005, and then taught and was the Dean of Students at San Miguel High School in Tucson. At Ken-Ton, he pioneered several online courses for high school students. In the 1980s, he spent three years teaching in Colombia, South America and spent four years at Lewiston-Porter High School. He currently is the PowerSchool Administrator for San Miguel accomplishing his work over the Internet.