Today is Wednesday, Oct. 3, the 277th day of 2012. There are 89 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Oct. 3, 1962, astronaut Wally Schirra became the fifth American to fly in space as he blasted off from Cape Canaveral aboard the Sigma 7 on a 9-hour flight.
On this date:
In 1789, President George Washington declared Nov. 26, 1789, a day of Thanksgiving to express gratitude for the creation of the United States of America.
In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday in November Thanksgiving Day.
In 1932, Iraq became independent of British administration.
In 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Office of Economic Stabilization.
In 1951, the New York Giants captured the National League pennant by a score of 5-4 as Bobby Thomson hit a three-run homer off the Brooklyn Dodgers' Ralph Branca in the "shot heard 'round the world."
In 1952, Britain conducted its first atomic test as it detonated a 25-kiloton device in the Monte Bello Islands off Australia. The situation comedy "Our Miss Brooks," formerly a radio show, premiered on CBS-TV with Eve Arden again in the title role.
In 1962, the British musical "Stop the World — I Want to Get Off" opened on Broadway with Anthony Newley and Anna Quayle reprising their West End roles.
In 1967, folk singer-songwriter Woody Guthrie died in New York at age 55.
In 1970, the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) was established under the Department of Commerce.
In 1992, Barack Obama married Michelle Robinson at the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago.
In 1995, the jury in the O.J. Simpson murder trial found the former football star not guilty of the 1994 slayings of his former wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ronald Goldman (however, Simpson was later found liable in a civil trial).
In 2008, O.J. Simpson was found guilty of robbing two sports-memorabilia dealers at gunpoint in a Las Vegas hotel room. (Simpson was later sentenced to nine to 33 years in prison.)
Ten years ago: Five people were shot to death in the Washington, D.C. area within a 14-hour period, sparking the hunt for the "Beltway Sniper." Hurricane Lili gave Louisiana's coast a 100-mile-an-hour battering. Producer-director Bruce Paltrow, 58, died in Rome, Italy.
Five years ago: North Korea agreed to provide a complete list of its nuclear programs and disable its facilities at its main reactor complex by December 31, 2007. (However, North Korea later said it would move to restore its nuclear reactor, saying the United States had failed to follow through with promised incentives.) President George W. Bush quietly vetoed expansion of a children's health insurance program.
One year ago: An Italian appeals court freed Amanda Knox of Seattle after four years in prison, tossing murder convictions against Knox and an ex-boyfriend in the stabbing of their British roommate, Meredith Kercher. Three scientists, Bruce Beutler of the U.S., Jules Hoffmann of France and Canadian-born Ralph Steinman (who had died three days earlier), won the Nobel Prize in medicine. Arthur C. Nielsen Jr., 92, who'd led the famous TV ratings company, died in Winnetka, Ill.
Today's Birthdays: Basketball Hall of Famer Marques O. Haynes is 86. Composer Steve Reich is 76. Singer Alan O'Day is 72. Rock and roll star Chubby Checker is 71. Actor Alan Rachins is 70. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., is 69. Magician Roy Horn is 68. Singer Lindsey Buckingham is 63. Jazz musician Ronnie Laws is 62. Blues singer Keb' Mo' is 61. Former astronaut Kathryn Sullivan is 61. Baseball Hall of Famer Dave Winfield is 61. Baseball Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley is 58. Civil rights activist Rev. Al Sharpton is 58. Actor Hart Bochner is 56. Actor Peter Frechette is 56. Golfer Fred Couples is 53. Actor-comedian Greg Proops is 53. Actor Jack Wagner is 53. Rock musician Tommy Lee is 50. Actor Clive Owen is 48. Actress Janel Moloney is 43. Singer Gwen Stefani (steh-FAH'-nee) (No Doubt) is 43. Pop singer Kevin Richardson is 41. Rock singer G. Love is 40. Actress Keiko Agena (KAY'-koh ah-GAYN'-ah) is 39. Actress Neve Campbell is 39. Singer India.Arie (ah-REE') is 37. Rapper Talib Kweli (tuh-LIB' kwah-LEE') is 37. Actress Alanna Ubach is 37. Actor Seann (cq) William Scott is 36. Actress Shannyn Sossamon is 34. Rock musician Josh Klinghoffer (Red Hot Chili Peppers) is 31. Actor Seth Gabel is 31. Rock musician Mark King (Hinder) is 30. Actor Erik Von Detten is 30. Singer-musician Cherrill Green (Edens Edge) is 29. Actress-singer Ashlee Simpson-Wentz is 28.
Thought for Today: "The worst disease in the world is the plague of vengeance." — Dr. Karl Menninger, American psychiatrist (1893-1990).
(Above Advance for Use Wednesday, Oct. 3)
Copyright 2012, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.