June 12

George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st President of the United States was born in 1924 in Milton, Massachusetts. Before becoming president, he had been a vice president, a congressman, an ambassador, and Director of the CIA. He is the oldest living president at age 90. Bush is a World War II veteran and often called “Bush 41” to distinguish him from his son, George W. Bush, the 43rd president. He graduated from Yale after the war and moved to Texas and made a fortune in the oil business. Bush defeated Michael Dukakis in the 1988 election and then lost to Clinton in 1992. He has been working with Bill Clinton in various humanitarian activities.

In 1929, Anne Frank was born in Frankfurt, Germany. The Diary of a Young Girl as been used for many plays and films, and is widely read my many school-age children. She lived most of her life in or near Amsterdam. In 1940, the Frank family was trapped in Amsterdam after Germany took control of the Netherlands. They went into hiding, but were found and transported to concentrations camps. Anne and her sister, Margot died of typhus in Bergen-Belsen in March of 1945. Otto Frank recovered Anne’s diary and it was published in England in 1952.

Medgar Evers was a civil rights activist in Mississippi who was trying to fight segregation. A member of the White Citizens’ Council assassinated him in 1963. As a veteran, Evers was buried in Arlington National Cemetery. His murder inspired many protest and many works of art, music, and films. On the morning of June 12, he pulled into his driveway, returning home after meeting with NAACP lawyers. Evers was shot in the back with an Enfield 1917 rifle. Byron De La Beckwith was arrested and tried, but two all-white juries were deadlocked. In 1994, Beckwith was tried again with new evidence and convicted. He died in prison in 2001.

In 1987, President Ronald Reagan challenged Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down this wall!” Reagan was giving a speech in front of the famous Brandenburg Gate in Berlin as Germans were celebrating the 750th anniversary of the city of Berlin. The wall had been erected in 1961 and was the symbol of the Cold War. The Berlin Wall was finally opened on November 9, 1989.

Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman were murdered outside Nicole’s home in 1994. Nicole Brown had been married to football player O.J. Simpson from 1985-1992 and had two children together. O.J. Simpson was arrested and charged with the murders and was found not guilty by a jury. He later was found guilty in a civil suit brought by the families of the two victims. Simpson was ordered to pay $33,500,000 in damages.

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.