Today in History: April 17, Bay of Pigs invasion

April 17, 2022 GMT

Today in History

Today is Sunday, April 17, the 107th day of 2022. There are 258 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On April 17, 1961, some 1,500 CIA-trained Cuban exiles launched the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in an attempt to topple Fidel Castro, whose forces crushed the incursion by the third day.

On this date:

In 1521, Martin Luther went before the Diet of Worms (vohrms) to face charges stemming from his religious writings. (Luther was later declared an outlaw by Holy Roman Emperor Charles V.)

In 1961, “The Apartment” won the Academy Award for best picture of 1960; Burt Lancaster was named best actor for “Elmer Gantry,” while the best actress award went to Elizabeth Taylor for “Butterfield 8.”

In 1964, Ford Motor Co. unveiled the Mustang at the New York World’s Fair.

In 1969, a jury in Los Angeles convicted Sirhan Sirhan of assassinating Sen. Robert F. Kennedy.


In 1970, Apollo 13 astronauts James A. Lovell, Fred W. Haise and Jack Swigert splashed down safely in the Pacific, four days after a ruptured oxygen tank crippled their spacecraft while en route to the moon.

In 1972, the Boston Marathon allowed women to compete for the first time; Nina Kuscsik was the first officially recognized women’s champion, with a time of 3:10:26.

In 1973, Federal Express (later FedEx) began operations as 14 planes carrying 186 packages took off from Memphis International Airport, bound for 25 U.S. cities.

In 1975, Cambodia’s five-year war ended as the capital Phnom Penh fell to the Khmer Rouge, which instituted brutal, radical policies that claimed an estimated 1.7 million lives until the regime was overthrown in 1979.

In 1986, at London’s Heathrow Airport, a bomb was discovered in the bag of Anne-Marie Murphy, a pregnant Irishwoman about to board an El Al jetliner to Israel; she’d been tricked into carrying the bomb by her Jordanian fiance, Nezar Hindawi. The bodies of kidnapped American Peter Kilburn and Britons Philip Padfield and Leigh Douglas were found near Beirut; they had been slain in apparent retaliation for the U.S. raid on Libya.

In 1991, the Dow Jones industrial average closed above 3,000 for the first time, ending the day at 3,004.46, up 17.58.

In 1993, a federal jury in Los Angeles convicted two former police officers of violating the civil rights of beaten motorist Rodney King; two other officers were acquitted. Turkish President Turgut Ozal died at age 66.

In 2020, President Donald Trump urged supporters to “LIBERATE” three states led by Democratic governors, apparently encouraging protests against stay-at-home mandates aimed at stopping the coronavirus. Washington Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee accused Trump of “fomenting domestic rebellion and spreading lies.”


Ten years ago: Riding on the back of a 747 jet, retired space shuttle Discovery traveled from Cape Canaveral, Florida, to Chantilly, Virginia, to be installed in its new home: the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum annex near Washington Dulles Airport in Northern Virginia. Jamie Moyer, at age 49, became the oldest pitcher ever to win a major league contest as the Colorado Rockies beat the San Diego Padres 5-3.

Five years ago: Opening his first White House Easter Egg Roll, President Donald Trump extolled the strength of America as thousands of kids, and some adults, reveled in the time-honored tradition of rolling hard-boiled eggs across the manicured lawn. Kenyans ruled the Boston Marathon, with Geoffrey Kirui and Edna Kiplagat winning the race in their debuts.

One year ago: The global death toll from the coronavirus topped 3 million people, according to Johns Hopkins University, amid repeated setbacks in the worldwide vaccination campaign and a deepening crisis in places such as Brazil, India and France. Britain’s Prince Philip was laid to rest in a funeral ceremony at Windsor Castle that honored his lifetime of service; his wife of 73 years, Queen Elizabeth II, sat alone at the ceremony, setting an example amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Today’s Birthdays: Actor David Bradley is 80. Composer-musician Jan Hammer (yahn HAH’-mur) is 74. Actor Olivia Hussey is 71. Actor Clarke Peters is 70. Rapper Afrika Bambaataa is 65. Actor Sean Bean is 63. Former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason (eh-SY’-uh-suhn) is 61. Actor Joel Murray is 60. Rock singer Maynard James Keenan is 58. Actor Lela Rochon (LEE’-lah rohn-SHAHN’) is 58. Actor William Mapother is 57. Actor Leslie Bega is 55. Actor Henry Ian Cusick is 55. Actor Kimberly Elise is 55. Singer Liz Phair is 55. Director/producer Adam McKay is 54. Rapper-actor Redman is 52. Actor Jennifer Garner is 50. Singer Victoria Beckham is 48. Actor-singer Lindsay Korman is 44. Actor Tate Ellington is 43. Actor Nicholas D’Agosto is 42. Actor Charlie Hofheimer is 41. Actor Rooney Mara is 37. Actor Jacqueline MacInnes Wood is 35. Actor Paulie Litt is 27. Actor Dee Dee Davis is 26.