Wednesday July 17, 2002

Today’s Highlight in History:f 

On July 17, 1981, 114 people were killed when a pair of walkways above the lobby of the Kansas City Hyatt Regency Hotel collapsed during a “tea dance.” 

On this date: 

In 1821, Spain ceded Florida to the United States. 

In 1898, during the Spanish-American War, Spanish troops in Santiago, Cuba, surrendered to U.S. forces. 

In 1917, the British royal family adopted the name “Windsor.” 

In 1938, aviator Douglas Corrigan took off from New York, saying he was headed for California; he ended up in Ireland, earning the nickname “Wrong Way Corrigan.” 

In 1944, 322 people were killed when a pair of ammunition ships exploded in Port Chicago, Calif. Most of them were blacks who were loading the ships. 

In 1955, Disneyland debuted in Anaheim, Calif. 

In 1975, an Apollo spaceship docked with a Soyuz spacecraft in orbit in the first superpower link-up of its kind. 

In 1979, Nicaraguan President Anastasio Somoza resigned and fled into exile in Miami. 

In 1996, TWA Flight 800, a Paris-bound Boeing 747, exploded and crashed off New York’s Long Island shortly after departing John F. Kennedy International Airport. All 230 people aboard were killed. 

Ten years ago: A historic accord for deep cuts in tanks and other non-nuclear arms in Europe went into effect, nearly two years after it was signed by NATO and the now-defunct Warsaw Pact. 

Five years ago: Woolworth Corp. announced it was closing its 400 remaining five-and-dime stores across the country, ending 117 years in business.  

One year ago: Katharine Graham, chairman of the executive committee of The Washington Post Co., died three days after suffering a head injury in Sun Valley, Idaho. She was 84. 

Today’s Birthdays: Comedian Phyllis Diller is 85. Actor Donald Sutherland is 67. Actor David Hasselhoff is 50. Singer JC (PM Dawn) is 31. Rapper Sole is 29.