updated 6/8/2005 12:13:46 AM ET 2005-06-08T04:13:46

Today is Wednesday, June 8, the 159th day of 2005. There are 206 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 8, A.D. 632, the prophet Mohammed died.

On this date:
In 1845, Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States, died in Nashville, Tenn.

In 1861, Tennessee seceded from the Union.

In 1876, author George Sand died in Nohant, France.

In 1905, 100 years ago, President Theodore Roosevelt offered to act as a mediator in the Russo-Japanese War.

In 1915, Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan resigned in a disagreement over U.S. handling of the sinking of the Lusitania.

In 1953, the Supreme Court ruled that restaurants in the District of Columbia could not refuse to serve blacks.

In 1967, 34 U.S. servicemen were killed when Israeli forces raided the Liberty, a Navy ship stationed in the Mediterranean. (Israel called the attack a tragic mistake.)

In 1968, authorities announced the capture in London of James Earl Ray, the suspected assassin of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

In 1978, a jury in Clark County, Nev., ruled the so-called “Mormon will,” purportedly written by the late billionaire Howard Hughes, was a forgery.

In 1982, President Reagan became the first American chief executive to address a joint session of the British Parliament.

Ten years ago: U.S. Marines rescued Captain Scott O’Grady, whose F-16-C fighter jet had been shot down by Bosnian Serbs on June 2. Mickey Mantle received a liver transplant at a Dallas hospital; however, the baseball great succumbed to disease two months later.

Five years ago: Two gunmen shot to death Brigadier Stephen Saunders, a British defense attache, in Athens, Greece; the elusive terrorist group Nov. 17 claimed responsibility, saying it killed Saunders because of his role in NATO airstrikes against Yugoslavia. Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Jeff MacNally died in Baltimore, Md., at age 52.

One year ago: The U.N. Security Council gave unanimous approval to a resolution endorsing the transfer of sovereignty to Iraq’s new government by the end of June. Three Italians and a Polish contractor who’d been abducted in Iraq were freed by U.S. special forces. An American who worked for a U.S. defense contractor was shot and killed in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. In a celestial rarity, Venus lined up between the sun and the Earth.

Today’s Birthdays: Former President Suharto of Indonesia is 84. Former First Lady Barbara Bush is 80. Actor-comedian Jerry Stiller is 78. Comedian Joan Rivers is 72. Actress Millicent Martin is 71. Actor James Darren is 69. Actor Bernie Casey is 66. Singer Nancy Sinatra is 65. Singer Chuck Negron (Three Dog Night) is 63. Musician Boz Scaggs is 61. Actor Don Grady is 61. Rock musician Mick Box (Uriah Heep) is 58. Author Sara Paretsky is 58. Actress Sonia Braga is 55. Actress Kathy Baker is 55. Country musician Tony Rice is 54. Singer Bonnie Tyler is 52. Actor Griffin Dunne is 50. “Dilbert” creator Scott Adams is 48. Actor-director Keenen Ivory Wayans is 47. Singer Mick Hucknall (Simply Red) is 45. Musician Nick Rhodes (Duran Duran) is 43. Rhythm-and-blues singer Doris Pearson (Five Star) is 39. Actress Julianna Margulies is 38. Actor Dan Futterman is 38. Rhythm-and-blues singer Nicci Gilbert is 35. Actress Kelli Williams is 35. Actor Mark Feuerstein is 34. Rapper Kanye West is 27. Folk-bluegrass singer-musician Sara Watkins (Nickel Creek) is 24.

Thought for Today: “I do believe one ought to face facts. If you don’t they get behind you and may become terrors, nightmares, giants, horrors. As long as one faces them one is top dog.” — Katherine Mansfield, New Zealander author (1888-1923).

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