Today In History, Wednesday, December 23rd


Today is Wednesday, Dec. 23, the 358th day of 2020. There are eight days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Dec. 23, 1954, the first successful human kidney transplant took place at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston as a surgical team removed a kidney from 23-year-old Ronald Herrick and implanted it in Herrick’s twin brother, Richard.
On this date:
In 1783, George Washington resigned as commander in chief of the Continental Army and retired to his home at Mount Vernon, Virginia.
In 1913, the Federal Reserve System was created as President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act.
In 1933, President Franklin D. Roosevelt restored the civil rights of about 1,500 people who had been jailed for opposing the (First) World War.
In 1941, during World War II, American forces on Wake Island surrendered to the Japanese.
In 1948, former Japanese premier Hideki Tojo and six other Japanese war leaders were executed in Tokyo.
In 1962, Cuba began releasing prisoners from the failed Bay of Pigs invasion under an agreement in which Cuba received more than $50 million worth of food and medical supplies.
In 1968, 82 crew members of the U.S. intelligence ship Pueblo were released by North Korea, 11 months after they had been captured.
In 1972, a 6.2-magnitude earthquake struck Nicaragua; the disaster claimed some 5,000 lives.
In 1986, the experimental airplane Voyager, piloted by Dick Rutan (ruh-TAN’) and Jeana (JEE’-nuh) Yeager, completed the first non-stop, non-refueled round-the-world flight as it returned safely to Edwards Air Force Base in California.
In 1997, a federal jury in Denver convicted Terry Nichols of involuntary manslaughter and conspiracy for his role in the Oklahoma City bombing, declining to find him guilty of murder. (Nichols was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.)
In 2001, Time magazine named New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani its Person of the Year for his steadfast response to the 9/11 terrorist attack.
In 2003, a jury in Chesapeake, Va., sentenced teen sniper Lee Boyd Malvo to life in prison, sparing him the death penalty.
Ten years ago: Mail bombs blamed on anarchists exploded at the Swiss and Chilean embassies in Rome, seriously wounding two people. Chicago Board of Election Commissioners ruled that former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was a resident of the city and therefore eligible to run for mayor.
Five years ago: Protesters blocked access to a terminal and caused significant holiday traffic delays around Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after staging a Black Lives Matter rally that also briefly shut down part of the Mall of America; the demonstrations were organized to draw attention to the recent police shooting of a Black man in Minneapolis. Peggy Say, 74, who spent nearly seven years on a tireless quest for the release of her brother, AP journalist Terry Anderson, and fellow hostages from kidnappers in Lebanon, died in Cookeville, Tennessee.
One year ago: Boeing ousted CEO Dennis Muilenburg as the company remained engulfed in the crisis stemming from the crash of two of its 737 Max airliners. A court in Saudi Arabia sentenced five people to death for the killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi, a critic of the Saudi royal family; the five were among 11 people who were put on trial over the killing.
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Ronnie Schell is 89. Former Emperor Akihito of Japan is 87. Actor Frederic Forrest is 84. Rock musician Jorma Kaukonen (YOR’-mah KOW’-kah-nen) is 80. Rock musician Ron Bushy is 79. Actor-comedian Harry Shearer is 77. U.S. Army Gen. Wesley K. Clark (ret.) is 76. Actor Susan Lucci is 74. Singer-musician Adrian Belew is 71. Rock musician Dave Murray (Iron Maiden) is 64. Actor Joan Severance is 62. Singer Terry Weeks is 57. Rock singer Eddie Vedder (Pearl Jam) is 56. The former first lady of France, Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, is 53. Rock musician Jamie Murphy is 45. Jazz musician Irvin Mayfield is 43. Actor Estella Warren is 42. Actor Elvy Yost is 33. Actor Anna Maria Perez de Tagle (TAG’-lee) is 30. Actor Spencer Daniels is 28. Actor Caleb Foote is 27.