December 15

In 1961, Adolf Eichmann was sentenced to death after being found guilty of 15 criminal charges. He had been captured in Argentina on May 11, 1960 and he spent the next nine months in a prison in northern Israel. Eichmann was found guilty of crimes against humanity, which included his involvement with conditions on deportation trains and the capturing of Jews for those trains. Additional charges included war crimes, crimes against Poles, Slovenes, and Gypsies and membership in organizations deemed criminal by the Nuremberg trials that included the Gestapo, the SD, and the SS. After an appeals process, Eichmann was hanged on May 31, 1962.

 

Gemini 6A was launched from Cape Kennedy in Florida in 1965. The mission accomplished the first manned rendezvous with another spacecraft, Gemini 7. The two spacecraft came within one foot of each other, but did not have docking capabilities. The two astronauts on board were Wally Schirra and Thomas Stafford. The entire mission lasted just under one day and two hours. It was the 13th manned flight in U.S. space history.

 

Jimmy Carter announced in 1978 that the United States would recognize the People’s Republic of China (Communist China) and establish diplomatic relations with that nation. On January 1, 1979, the United States officially transferred diplomatic relations from Taipei to Beijing. Deng Xiaoping was the leader of China at that time and the two nations established many bilateral agreements in the fields of trade relations, cultural exchanges, and technological advancements. New York and Beijing became sister cities.

 

Birthdays Today

 

1911Stan Kenton, American pianist and composer (d. 1979)

1921Alan Freed, American radio host (d. 1965)

1933Tim Conway, American actor, producer, and screenwriter

1942 – Dave Clark, English drummer, songwriter, and producer (The Dave Clark Five)

1944Chico Mendes, Brazilian union leader and activist (d. 1988)

1949Don Johnson, American actor, singer, and producer

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.