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Today in History: April 27, deadly Alabama tornadoes

Today in History

Today is Wednesday, April 27, the 117th day of 2022. There are 248 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On April 27, 1994, former President Richard M. Nixon was remembered at an outdoor funeral service attended by all five of his successors at the Nixon presidential library in Yorba Linda, California.

On this date:

In 1521, Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan was killed by natives in the Philippines.

In 1810, Ludwig van Beethoven wrote one of his most famous piano compositions, the Bagatelle in A-minor.

In 1813, the Battle of York took place in Upper Canada during the War of 1812 as a U.S. force defeated the British garrison in present-day Toronto before withdrawing.

In 1865, the steamer Sultana, carrying freed Union prisoners of war, exploded on the Mississippi River near Memphis, Tennessee; death toll estimates vary from 1,500 to 2,000.

In 1941, German forces occupied Athens during World War II.

In 1973, acting FBI Director L. Patrick Gray resigned after it was revealed that he'd destroyed files removed from the safe of Watergate conspirator E. Howard Hunt.

In 1978, 51 construction workers plunged to their deaths when a scaffold inside a cooling tower at the Pleasants Power Station site in West Virginia fell 168 feet to the ground.

In 1992, Russia and 12 other former Soviet republics won entry into the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

In 2010, former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega was extradited from the United States to France, where he was later convicted of laundering drug money and received a seven-year sentence.

In 2011, powerful and deadly tornadoes raked the South and Midwest; more than 60 tornadoes crossed parts of Alabama, leaving about 250 people dead and thousands of others injured in the state.

In 2015, rioters plunged part of Baltimore into chaos, torching a pharmacy, setting police cars ablaze and throwing bricks at officers hours after thousands attended a funeral for Freddie Gray, a Black man who died from a severe spinal injury he'd suffered in police custody; the Baltimore Orioles' home game against the Chicago White Sox was postponed because of safety concerns.

In 2019, a gunman opened fire inside a synagogue near San Diego as worshippers celebrated the last day of Passover, killing a woman and wounding the rabbi and two others. (John Earnest, a white supremacist, has been sentenced to both federal and state life prison terms.)

Ten years ago: The space shuttle Enterprise, mounted atop a jumbo jet, sailed over the New York City skyline on its final flight before becoming a museum piece aboard the USS Intrepid.

Five years ago: David Dao, the airline passenger who was violently dragged off a flight after refusing to give up his seat, settled with United for an undisclosed sum; cellphone video of the April 9 confrontation aboard a jetliner at Chicago's O'Hare Airport had sparked widespread public outrage over the way Dao was treated. About 20 hours after he fatally shot a state trooper, a Delaware man was shot to death following an overnight standoff with police. Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett was picked first overall by the Cleveland Browns in the NFL Draft.

One year ago: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eased its guidelines on the wearing of masks outdoors, saying fully vaccinated Americans didn't need to cover their faces anymore unless they were in a big crowd of strangers; those who were unvaccinated could also go outside without masks in some situations. President Joe Biden signed an executive order to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour for federal contractors, providing a pay bump to hundreds of thousands of workers.

Today's Birthdays: Actor Anouk Aimee is 90. Rock musician Jim Keltner is 80. Rock singer Kate Pierson (The B-52's) is 74. R&B singer Herb Murrell (The Stylistics) is 73. Actor Douglas Sheehan is 73. Rock musician Ace Frehley is 71. West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice is 71. Pop singer Sheena Easton is 63. Actor James Le Gros (groh) is 60. Rock musician Rob Squires (Big Head Todd and the Monsters) is 57. Singer Mica (MEE'-shah) Paris is 53. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., is 53. Actor David Lascher is 50. Actor Maura West is 50. Actor Sally Hawkins is 46. Rock singer Jim James (My Morning Jacket) is 44. Rock musician Patrick Hallahan (My Morning Jacket) is 44. Rock singer-musician Travis Meeks (Days of the New) is 43. Country musician John Osborne (Brothers Osborne) is 40. Actor Francis Capra is 39. Actor Ari Graynor is 39. Rock singer-musician Patrick Stump (Fall Out Boy) is 38. Actor Sheila Vand is 37. Actor Jenna Coleman is 36. Actor William Moseley is 35. Singer Lizzo is 34. Actor Emily Rios is 33. Singer Allison Iraheta is 30.