March 23

German rocket engineer and space architect, Wernher von Braun was born in 1912. He was the leader in German rocket technology during World War II and then in the United States and has been called the “Father of Rocket Science.” Along with other German scientists, von Braun helped design the German V-2 rocket. In the United States, he was the chief architect of the Saturn rocket used in the Apollo missions.  Von Braun died in 1977.

Sir Roger Gilbert Bannister, born in 1929, is an athlete, doctor, and academic who is credited for running the first sub-four-minute mile. This feat was achieved in Oxford, England in 1954 and the official time was 3 minutes 59.4 seconds. The record lasted only 46 days. Bannister went on to become a neurologist and was knighted in 1975.

Fashion designer Kenneth Cole was born in 1954 in Brooklyn, NY. He was a graduate of Emory University in 1976 and founded the Kenneth Cole Productions in 1982. The company now operates 90 retail and outlet stores around the world. His company stopped selling fur in 2007. Cole is married to Maria Cuomo, daughter of former governor Mario Cuomo of New York.

In 1965, NASA launches Gemini 3, the United States' first two-man space flight with  Gus Grissom and John Young as its crew. The spacecraft, nicknamed Molly Brown, performed the seventh manned US spaceflight, and the 17th manned spaceflight overall. It was the first manned space flight controlled by Cape Canaveral. The goal of the mission was to test the maneuverability of a manned space craft.

The 70th Academy Awards ceremony took place in 1998 and awards were for films made in 1997. Billy Crystal was the host for the 6th time. Major winners included:

Best Picture – Titanic
Best Director – James Cameron for Titanic
Best Actor – Jack Nicholson for As Good As It Gets
Best Actress – Helen Hunt for As Good AS It Gets
Best Supporting Actor – Robin Williams for Good Will Hunting
Best Supporting Actress – Kim Basinger for L.A. Confidential


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.