March 13

Singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka was born in 1939. He has written or co-written over 500 songs including Calendar Girl (1961), Breaking Up is Hard to Do (1962), Laughter in the Rain (1975), and Bad Blood (1975).

The battle of Dien Bien Phu began in 1954 and was the climatic confrontation between the French and the Viet Minh in Vietnam. The defeat of the French set the stage for the agreements at Geneva for Vietnam’s future. It may have marked the first time that a colonial independence movement was able to defeat a modern Western nation. Over 11,000 French soldiers were captured.

Phoenix police arrested Ernesto Miranda in 1963. After two hours of interrogation, Miranda signed a confession to a rape charge. He was not told of his right to counsel or of his right to remain silent. After being found guilty and sentenced to a long term of imprisonment, his lawyer appealed the case, which made it to the Supreme Court. The result, by a vote of 5-4, led to the issuing of “Miranda warnings” by police when an arrest is made.

Kitty Genovese was stabbed to death near her home in Queens in 1964. Two weeks after the murder a newspaper article reported on the seemingly lack of action by people who witnessed the event. The original article blamed 38 bystanders for not acting, but new information refutes this. The crime led to many studies of the “bystander effect or Genovese syndrome.” Her attacker was eventually sentenced to life in prison.

In 2008, gold prices hit $1,000 per ounce for the first time. gold prices.

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.