Good morning, it’s Wednesday, March 8, the 67th day of 2017. There are 298 days left in the year. Temperatures will be in the lower 40s at the start of the day, but we’re expecting highs in the lower 70s this afternoon under a partly sunny sky. Lows overnight should be in the upper 50s.
On March 8, 1836—181 years ago today—James W. Fannin celebrated Texas’ Declaration of Independence by raising a flag at Goliad bearing the words “Liberty or Death.” On March 19, 1836, he and his more than 300 Georgia volunteers were surrounded and forced to surrender at the battle of Coleto. They were imprisoned at Goliad and on March 27, 1836, on Santa Ana’s orders, nearly all of them were executed (Fannin, who was wounded earlier, was killed separately the same day). The flag was designed by Johanna Troutman, who’s sometimes called the Betsy Ross of Texas, and was carried to Texas by the Georgia Battalion of Volunteers.
Today's Highlight in Local History:
On March 8, 1975, First Cavalry Division troops were sent to Vietnam.
On March 8, 1994, a riot and fire were reported at the McLennan County Jail.
On March 8, 1998, Vietnam veteran Jason Leigh held local, county, state and federal authorities at bay for 14 hours after breaking into the VA Regional Office in downtown Waco. He claimed to have four pounds of C-4 and a high-powered rifle. No explosives were found after he surrendered.
On March 8, 2013, Robert Griffin III Boulevard was dedicated in Copperas Cove.
Today's Highlight in History:
On March 8, 1917, Russia's "February Revolution" (referring to the Old Style calendar) began in Petrograd; the result was the abdication of the Russian monarchy in favor of a provisional government that was overthrown later the same year by the Bolsheviks. Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin, 78, creator of the rigid airships bearing his name, died in Berlin. The U.S. Senate voted to limit filibusters by adopting the cloture rule.
On This Date:
In 1702, England's Queen Anne acceded to the throne upon the death of King William III.
In 1817, the New York Stock & Exchange Board, which had its beginnings in 1792, was formally organized; it later became known as the New York Stock Exchange.
In 1854, U.S. Commodore Matthew C. Perry made his second landing in Japan; within a month, he concluded a treaty with the Japanese.
In 1874, the 13th president of the United States, Millard Fillmore, died in Buffalo, New York, at age 74.
In 1930, the 27th president of the United States, William Howard Taft, died in Washington at age 72.
In 1942, Imperial Japanese forces occupied Rangoon (Yangon) during World War II.
In 1965, the United States landed its first combat troops in South Vietnam as 3,500 Marines arrived to defend the U.S. air base at Da Nang.
In 1966, Nelson's Pillar, a 120-foot-high column in Dublin honoring British naval hero Horatio Nelson, was bombed by the Irish Republican Army.
In 1979, technology firm Philips demonstrated a prototype compact disc player during a press conference in Eindhoven, the Netherlands.
In 1983, in a speech to the National Association of Evangelicals convention in Orlando, Florida, President Ronald Reagan referred to the Soviet Union as an "evil empire."
In 1999, baseball Hall of Famer Joe DiMaggio died in Hollywood, Florida, at age 84.
In 2014, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, a Boeing 777 with 239 people on board, vanished during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, setting off a massive search. (To date, the fate of the jetliner and its occupants has yet to be determined.)
Ten years ago:
President George W. Bush arrived in Sao Paulo, Brazil, as he began a 6-day tour of Latin America. House Democrats unveiled legislation to require the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq by the fall of 2008; the White House said President Bush would veto it. In his first news conference since taking over command of U.S. forces in Iraq, Gen. David Petraeus said insurgents were seeking to intensify attacks and that it was "very likely" additional U.S. forces would be sent to areas outside Baghdad where militant groups were regrouping.
Five years ago:
Syria's deputy oil minister, Abdo Husameddine, announced in a video that he had defected from President Bashar Assad's regime. Jesse Owens was posthumously made an inaugural member of the IAAF Hall of Fame more than 75 years after he won four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. (Owens, Carl Lewis, Jackie Joyner-Kersee and nine others were the first athletes to be honored by the IAAF in its newly created Hall of Fame.) James T. "Jimmy" Ellis, 74, the frontman for The Trammps who released "Disco Inferno," died in Rock Hill, South Carolina.
One year ago:
Democrat Bernie Sanders breathed new life into his longshot White House bid with a crucial win in Michigan's primary while Hillary Clinton breezed to an easy victory in Mississippi; Republican Donald Trump swept to victory in Michigan, Mississippi and Hawaii, while Ted Cruz carried Idaho. Sir George Martin, the Beatles' urbane producer who guided the band's swift, historic transformation from rowdy club act to musical and cultural revolutionaries, died at age 90.
Actress Sue Ane Langdon is 81. College Football Hall of Famer Pete Dawkins is 79. Baseball player-turned-author Jim Bouton is 78. Songwriter Carole Bayer Sager is 73. Actor-director Micky Dolenz (The Monkees) is 72. Singer-musician Randy Meisner is 71. Pop singer Peggy March is 69. Baseball Hall of Famer Jim Rice is 64. Jazz musician Billy Childs is 60. Singer Gary Numan is 59. NBC News anchor Lester Holt is 58. Actor Aidan Quinn is 58. Country musician Jimmy Dormire is 57. Actress Camryn Manheim is 56. Actor Leon (no last name) is 54. Rock singer Shawn Mullins (The Thorns) is 49. Neo-soul singer Van Hunt is 47. Actress Andrea Parker is 47. Actor Boris Kodjoe is 44. Actor Freddie Prinze Jr. is 41. Actress Laura Main is 40. Actor James Van Der Beek is 40. Rhythm-and-blues singer Kameelah Williams (702) is 39. Actor Nick Zano is 39. Rock singer Tom Chaplin (Keane) is 38. Rock musician Andy Ross (OK Go) is 38. Actress Jessica Collins is 34. Rhythm-and-blues singer Kristinia DeBarge is 27.
Thought for Today:
"Contemplation seems to be about the only luxury that costs nothing." - Dodie Smith, English playwright (1896-1990).