Today is Thursday, Oct. 13, the 286th day of 2011. There are 79 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Oct. 13, 2010, rescuers in Chile using a missile-like escape capsule pulled 33 men one by one to fresh air and freedom 69 days after they were trapped in a collapsed mine a half-mile underground.
On this date:
In A.D. 54, Roman Emperor Claudius I died, poisoned apparently at the behest of his wife, Agrippina.
In 1307, King Philip IV of France ordered the arrests of Knights Templar on charges of heresy.
In 1775, the United States Navy had its origins as the Continental Congress ordered the construction of a naval fleet.
In 1792, the cornerstone of the executive mansion, later known as the White House, was laid during a ceremony in the District of Columbia.
In 1843, the Jewish organization B'nai B'rith was founded in New York City.
In 1845, Texas voters ratified a state constitution.
In 1944, American troops entered Aachen, Germany, during World War II.
In 1961, influential avant-garde filmmaker Maya Deren died in New York at age 44.
In 1974, longtime television host Ed Sullivan died in New York City at age 73.
In 1981, voters in Egypt participated in a referendum to elect Vice President Hosni Mubarak the new president, one week after the assassination of Anwar Sadat.
Ten years ago: Ukraine's defense minister and air defense chief offered to resign, conceding the military was involved in the explosion of a Russian airliner over the Black Sea Oct. 4 that killed 78 people. (Russian investigators concluded the plane was downed by a Ukrainian missile launched during military exercises; the two officials were fired by Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma.)
Five years ago: The United Nations General Assembly appointed South Korean Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon the next U.N. secretary-general. Banker Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh won the Nobel Peace Prize for using microcredit to lift people out of poverty. U.S. Rep. Bob Ney, R-Ohio, pleaded guilty in an influence-peddling investigation of Congress. (Ney served nearly a year and a-half of his original 2 1/2-year prison sentence.)
One year ago: U.S. authorities announced the arrests of 73 people accused of being part of a vast network of Armenian gangsters and their associates who allegedly used phantom health care clinics and other means to try to cheat Medicare out of $163 million.
Today's Birthdays: Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher is 86. Playwright Frank D. Gilroy is 86. Gospel singer Shirley Caesar is 73. Actress Melinda Dillon is 72. Singer-musician Paul Simon is 70. Actress Pamela Tiffin is 69. Musician Robert Lamm (Chicago) is 67. Country singer Lacy J. Dalton is 65. Actor Demond Wilson is 65. Singer-musician Sammy Hagar is 64. Actor John Lone is 59. Model Beverly Johnson is 59. Producer-writer Chris Carter is 55. Actor Reggie Theus is 54. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., is 53. Singer Marie Osmond is 52. Rock singer Joey Belladonna is 51. NBA coach Doc Rivers is 50. Actress T'Keyah Crystal Keymah is 49. College and Pro Football Hall of Famer Jerry Rice is 49. Actress Kelly Preston is 49. Country singer John Wiggins is 49. Actor Christopher Judge is 47. Actress Kate Walsh is 44. Rhythm-and-blues musician Jeff Allen (Mint Condition) is 43. Actress Tisha Campbell-Martin is 43. Classical singer Carlos Marin (Il Divo) is 43. Olympic silver-medal figure skater Nancy Kerrigan is 42. Country singer Rhett Akins is 42. TV personality Billy Bush is 40. Actor Sacha Baron Cohen is 40. Rock musician Jan Van Sichem Jr. (K's Choice) is 39. Rhythm-and-blues singers Brian and Brandon Casey (Jagged Edge) are 36. Actress Kiele Sanchez is 35. NBA All-Star Paul Pierce is 34. Singer Ashanti is 31. Christian rock singer Jon Micah Sumrall (Kutless) is 31. Olympic gold medal swimmer Ian Thorpe is 29.
Thought for Today: "A hero cannot be a hero unless in a heroic world." -- Nathaniel Hawthorne, American author (1804-1864).