Dec 31 1898
Joseph Vacher, known as “Jack the Ripper of France”, guillotined. He had a hideous appearance and suffered from Bell’s Palsy, a partial paralysis of the face. Vacher killed and mutilated at least 14 victims, young men and women, and committed necrophilia on many of their corpses.
Dec 31 1916
Forty-five retarded girls die in a fire at the St. Ferdinand de Halifax convent asylum in Canada.
Dec 31 1929
Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians played “Auld Lang Syne” as a New Year’s Eve song for the first time.
Dec 31 1970
The Beatles break up, as Paul McCartney files suit to dissolve their partnership.
Dec 31 1973
Carlos the Jackal tries to assassinate Teddy Zeiff, Jewish owner of a major English department store chain. His gun jams. But we all learn his name when he takes the OPEC ministers hostage two years later.
Dec 31 1980
Author and media pundit Marshall McLuhan dead at age 69.
Dec 31 1982
A coordinated series of four bombs planted by the Puerto Rican nationalist group FALN explode in Brooklyn and lower Manhattan inside of 90 minutes, injuring three police.
Dec 31 1984
The drummer from Def Leppard, Rick Allen, has his arm torn off in a car accident. He continues with the band single-handedly.
Dec 31 1985
Rock musician Ricky Nelson dies in an airplane crash in De Kalb, TX at age 45.