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Today in History — June 6

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Wednesday, June 6, the 157th day of 2007. There are 208 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:
On June 6, 1944, the “D-Day” invasion of Europe took place during World War II as Allied forces stormed the beaches of Normandy, France.

On this date:
In 1606, French dramatist Pierre Corneille was born in Rouen.

In 1844, the Young Men’s Christian Association was founded in London.

In 1918, the World War I Battle of Belleau Wood, which resulted in a U.S. victory over the Germans, began in France.

In 1925, Walter Percy Chrysler founded the Chrysler Corp.

In 1934, the Securities and Exchange Commission was established.

In 1942, Japanese forces retreated in the World War II Battle of Midway.

In 1966, black activist James Meredith was shot and wounded as he walked along a Mississippi highway to encourage black voter registration.

In 1968, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy died at Good Samaritan Hospital in Los Angeles, a day after he was shot by Sirhan Bishara Sirhan.

In 1978, California voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 13, a primary ballot initiative calling for major cuts in property taxes.

In 1982, Israeli forces invaded Lebanon to drive Palestine Liberation Organization fighters out of the country. (The Israelis withdrew in June 1985.)

Ten years ago: Timothy McVeigh’s lawyer pleaded with a jury to spare the life of the convicted Oklahoma City bomber, holding up his dress uniform and portraying him as a model soldier deeply disturbed by his government’s role in the disaster near Waco, Texas.

Five years ago: Stung by intelligence failures, President Bush called on Congress in a nationally broadcast address to remake the government with a terrorist-fighting Department of Homeland Security. Israeli troops stormed Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat’s headquarters in response to a Palestinian suicide attack that killed 17 Israelis on a bus.

One year ago: Veterans Affairs Secretary Jim Nicholson acknowledged a stolen computer contained personal data on about 2.2 million active-duty military, Guard and Reserve personnel — not just 50,000 as initially believed. Iran and the United States had a rare moment of agreement, using similar language to describe “positive steps” toward an accord on a package of incentives aimed at persuading Tehran to suspend uranium enrichment. Soul musician Billy Preston died in Scottsdale, Ariz., at age 59.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Billie Whitelaw is 75. Civil rights activist Roy Innis is 73. Singer Levi Stubbs (The Four Tops) is 71. Singer-songwriter Gary “U.S.” Bonds is 68. Country singer Joe Stampley is 64. Actor Robert Englund is 58. Folk singer Holly Near is 58. Singer Dwight Twilley is 56. Playwright-actor Harvey Fierstein is 53. Comedian Sandra Bernhard is 52. Tennis player Bjorn Borg is 51. Actress Amanda Pays is 48. Comedian Colin Quinn is 48. Record producer Jimmy Jam is 48. Rock musician Steve Vai is 47. Rock singer-musician Tom Araya (Slayer) is 46. Actor Jason Isaacs is 44. Rock musician Sean Yseult (White Zombie) is 41. Actor Max Casella is 40. Actor Paul Giamatti is 40. Rhythm-and-blues singer Damion Hall (Guy) is 39. Rock musician Bardi Martin is 38. Rock musician James “Munky” Shaffer (Korn) is 37. TV correspondent Natalie Morales is 35. Country singer Lisa Brokop is 34. Rapper-rocker Uncle Kracker is 33. Actress Staci Keanan is 32.

Thought for Today: “You never find yourself until you face the truth.” — Pearl Bailey, American singer and actress (1918-1990).