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					News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. Shinseki, Rodriguez Tour Audie Murphy Hospital. Soldier Concussions Said To Be Overdiagnosed By US Government. Blue Star Canteen To Open Near VA Hospital. Intelligence Assessment's Concern About Vets Triggers Backlash. Loans A Problem For Some House-Hunting Vets In Minnesota. Philadelphia VAMC Expanding Services Offered In New Jersey. VA Officials To Discuss New Orleans Hospital Plans With Public. Stimulus Funds Headed To VA Hospital In Tennessee. Dallas VAMC Shortens Surgery Wait Times. VA Hospital Participating In Green Program. Lawmakers Hoping Kessler Hospital Will Be Reopened By VA, AtlantiCare. Alexandria VAMC Sponsoring Diabetic Education Class For Women. WWII Vets In Eastern Visayas Soon To Receive Compensation. Colleges Partnering With VA To Educate Nurses. Vietnam Vet Receives Belated Purple Heart. Lawsuits Filed Against National Funeral Home. Veterans Cemeteries In Tennessee To Share Stimulus Funds. Louisiana VA Secretary At Military Order Of The Purple Heart Meeting. Council On Stimulus Research Spending Holds First "Listening Session." Bilirakis Praised For Attempting To Lessen Tax Burden On Military Families. Ensure Timely, Best Care At VA Hospitals And Clinics. Trying To Better Serving Those Who Served US. Valley Veterans Hope Valley Still Gets Hospital. National Commander Makes Visit To American Legion Post 8. New GI Bill Explained At Howell News Conference. Charlotte-Area Residents Win SBA Awards.

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. Air Force Awards WWII Pilot For Valor. Emotional Tribute To Tomb Of The Unknowns. Sailor Shields Wounded Veteran From Flames On I-5. Gates Critical Of Pentagon's Handling Of Iraq, Afghanistan. US Investing In Improved Batteries For Intelligence, Military. Pentagon Abolishes Controversial Public Diplomacy Office. AARP Report Highlights Rising Drug Prices. More Grade School, High School Students Being Taught Online. On the Hill: Today In History:

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
1.
KABBTV San Antonio, TX (4/15, 9:34 p.m. CT) broadcast that on Wednesday, Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki joined US Rep. Ciro Rodriguez (D-TX) "on a tour of Audie Murphy Hospital." KABB noted that Shinseki is "just the seventh" VA secretary.

Shinseki, Rodriguez Tour Audie Murphy Hospital.

2. Soldier Concussions Said To Be Overdiagnosed By US Government. The AP (4/16, Stobbe) reports, "Mild brain injuries...in returning" US
military troops "are being overdiagnosed because the government is using soft criteria instead of hard medical evidence," Dr. Charles Hoge, a "top Army doctor," and two other Army "officials contend" in an article "published in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine." The three, who "are taking aim at Department of Veterans Affairs' rule for treating such veterans and determining" disability pay, "want to call many mild cases 'concussions' rather than 'brain injuries.'" USA Today (4/16, Zoroya) reports Hoge and Col. Carl Castro, another Army mental health researcher who co-authored Thursday's article, "say the military should scrap screening questions meant to uncover cases of mild" traumatic brain injury (TBI) "among troops returning from combat," because most "troops who suffered a concussion in battle have recovered, they say. Any more symptoms are due to depression, post traumatic stress disorder or substance abuse, Hoge and Castro say, so troops do not get care they need because of an overemphasis on mild TBI." Their "arguments have convinced the Army's surgeon general, Gen. Eric Schoomaker, that the screening should be changed, says Schoomaker's spokeswoman, Cynthia Vaughan. But they also drew criticism from government and private brain-injury researchers." Recovering Vets May Soon Have Access To Computerized Monitoring Systems. Wired.com's (4/15, Drummond) "Danger Room" blog said the US military "is throwing money into just about anything as it tries to treat the tens of thousands of soldiers coming home with post-traumatic stress and brain injuries." And soon, "recovering vets may...have their own computerized pal to monitor their health and track their day-to-day lives – right down to reminding them of that 3 o'clock acupuncture session. The Defense Department recently handed out contracts to three companies to design independent living systems for injured vets." Two "of the systems being developed, from Ingenium Care, LLC and Camris International, use a wireless network packed with touch screens, motion detectors and wearable, pre-programmed schedulers."

Blue Star Canteen To Open Near VA Hospital. WUHF-TV Rochester, NY (4/15, 10:31 p.m. ET) broadcast, "Veterans returning from overseas will soon have a new place to hang out," a house near the Canandaigua Veterans Affairs Medical Center that the New York Chapter No. 1 of Blue Star Mothers of America are leasing from the VA. The group plans "to call the house Blue Star Canteen. That concept dates back to World War II, when...soldiers came off the battlefield" and "had a place where they could relax and find comfort." The Blue Star Mothers "hope to open the canteen to vets in August." WROC-TV Rochester, NY (4/15, 6:00 p.m. ET) aired a similar report.

3.

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
4. Intelligence Assessment's Concern About Vets Triggers Backlash. In continuing coverage, the Chicago Tribune (4/16, Miller) reports says
an intelligence assessment distributed by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) "to state and local authorities last week" has "triggered a backlash among some conservatives because it...raised the specter that disgruntled veterans returning" from Iraq and Afghanistan "might 'boost the capabilities of extremists ... to carry out violence.'" Fox News' America's Newsroom (4/15, 9:16 a.m. ET) similarly focused on the angry reaction produced by the assessment, interviewing Jay Alan Sekulow, chief counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice, who called the document "outrageous." The AP (4/16, Sullivan), meanwhile, reports Republicans, including House Republican leader John Boehner, "on Wednesday said a Homeland Security Department intelligence assessment unfairly characterizes military veterans as rightwing extremists." Boehner "described the report as offensive and called on the agency to apologize to veterans." Meanwhile, American Legion Commander David Rehbein "wrote to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano expressing concern with the assessment." But Napolitano "said the department respects and honors veterans and that she intends to meet with Rehbein next week after she returns from...meetings in Mexico City." The Hill (4/16, Wilson) notes that Napolitano said she plans to tell Rehbein "that we honor veterans at DHS and employ thousands across the department, up to and including the deputy secretary." Napolitano was referring to recently-confirmed Deputy Secretary Jane Holl Lute, who "served in the Army in Operation Desert Storm." The Politico (4/16, Dimascio) reports, "While the American Legion and conservative commentators have pounced on a recent Department of Homeland Security report on right-wing extremism, calling it politically motivated and slanderous toward veterans, a 2008 FBI report with similar findings generated little controversy or coverage." The FBI report, titled White Supremacist Recruitment of Military Personnel Since 9/11, "warned that new groups made up of well-trained veterans could crop up, and said the group has 'the potential to reinvigorate a movement that has experienced stagnation or decline in recent years.'" Also covering Napolitano's defense of the assessment, the Washington Post (4/16, O'Keefe) reports "aides said privately that the secretary regrets that critics have construed the report's language to suggest that the department perceives a threat from veterans, noting that the department's various agencies employ thousands of military veterans and that some of Napolitano's deputies once served in uniform." Columnist Thinks DHS May Define Some Vets As "Hate-Oriented." Michelle Malkin, writing in her syndicated column, appearing in the Washington Times (4/16) also discusses the American Legion. According to Malkin, the assessment "relies on the work of the left-leaning" Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) "to stir anxiety over 'disgruntled military veterans' -- a citation that gives us valuable insight into how" the DHS "will define 'hate-oriented groups. The SPLC, you see, has designated the venerable American Legion a 'hate group' for its stance on immigration enforcement." WTimes Agrees With Boehner, Says DHS Owes Vets An Apology. The Washington Times (4/16) also editorializes about the assessment, noting that on Wednesday, House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH), "said...Homeland Security owes veterans an apology for characterizing them as terrorists. We agree."

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
5. Loans A Problem For Some House-Hunting Vets In Minnesota. On its website, WCCO-TV Minneapolis, MN (4/15, Collin) noted that
"some Minnesota soldiers," such as Iraq veteran Mike Lapadat, "say the credit crunch has hurt their chances of owning a home." The Department of Veterans Affairs "offers a home loan guaranty program. The guaranty means the lender is protected against future losses," but the VA "can't force" a lender "to make a loan it doesn't want to make." The VA, however, is "trying to educate lenders about the difficulty some vets are going through." Meanwhile, the office of US Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) "says it's checking to see if there's a legislative solution, but any law allowing a loophole for soldiers will take time."

6. Philadelphia VAMC Expanding Services Offered In New Jersey. The Gloucester County (NJ) Times (4/15, Counihan) said, "Area veterans
will soon have more" healthcare "options available to them, as the Philadelphia Veterans Affairs Medical Center expands the services offered at its local community-based outpatient clinic in Gloucester County." The clinic "currently offers primary care, behavioral health, social work, cardiology, podiatry and optometry services, according to VA spokesman Dale Warman. The VA plans to expand these existing services," as "well as add audiology," rehabilitation, "and specialized women's health services, Warman said," adding that the clinic will be rededicated in early May. The VA "is also working to open a new clinic in downtown Camden, with the expectation that it will begin operating in June."

7. VA Officials To Discuss New Orleans Hospital Plans With Public. The New Orleans Times-Picayune (4/16, Barrow) reports, "Amid growing
questions about proposed hospital complexes for lower Mid-City, the public will have its first opportunity" Thursday "to speak directly" to US Department of Veterans Affairs "officials about preliminary designs for its portion of the project. The meeting, scheduled for 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Grace Episcopal Church, 3700 Canal St., comes as some individuals and organizations representing varying interests are asking government officials to reconsider -- or at least slow down -- their plans for the adjoining" Federal hospital "and state teaching medical center in a historic but blighted neighborhood. And despite the session being intended only for narrow critiques of schematic designs, the meeting could become a forum for people who would rather see the state make its investment in gutting and rebuilding the old Charity Hospital from within, while finding another space for the VA." There is "no indication," however, "from various levels of government that there will be any deviation from the current plans."

8.

Stimulus Funds Headed To VA Hospital In Tennessee. In continuing coverage, WVLT-TV Knoxville, TN (4/7, 11:03 p.m. ET) broadcast that according to the Department of Defense, "Federal stimulus funds are coming to several Tennessee military and veterans facilities." Among those receiving funds is the Veterans Affairs medical center in Johnson City, which "is getting nearly" $4 million "for renovation and new construction."

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
9.
In continuing coverage, WFAA-TV Dallas, TX (4/15, 10:04 p.m. CT) broadcast that the Dallas Veterans Affairs Medical Center "is making changes after a News 8 story. Last week, we reported painful waits of more than a year for some veterans needing surgery." One "reason: the lack of nurses." But "now, the VA tells us it has sent 300 veterans to private hospitals in North Texas, shortening wait times to three or four months." WFAA (4/15, Whitely) also covered this story on its website.

Dallas VAMC Shortens Surgery Wait Times.

VA Hospital Participating In Green Program. In a story noting that US Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) toured the Iris Glen Landfill in Johnson City, Tennessee, on Wednesday, WJHL-TV Tri Cities (TN-VA), VA (4/15, 6:08 p.m. ET) broadcast that the "landfill is turning a problem into a solution by using garbage to make energy," energy which is "already providing power" to the Veterans Affairs hospital at Mountain Home. Johnson City commissioners invited Alexander "to Iris Glen to showcase their new 'Going Green' program in all city buildings and schools, a program...they hope will save taxpayers money down the road." 11. Lawmakers Hoping Kessler Hospital Will Be Reopened By VA, AtlantiCare. The Press Of Atlantic City (4/16, Spahr) reports, "A trio of
lawmakers want" the closed Kessler Memorial Hospital "to be turned into a veterans hospital operated" by the US Department of Veterans Affairs "and AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center." But AtlantiCare officials "and the state legislators who actually represent Hammonton say they did not hear about the plan until they were sent copies of the request. State Sen. Jeff Van Drew and Assemblymen Nelson Albano and Matthew Milam, all D-Cape May, Cumberland, Atlantic, made the request in an April 7 letter" to US "Sens. Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez, both D-N.J."

10.

12. Alexandria VAMC Sponsoring Diabetic Education Class For Women. The Alexandria (LA) Town Talk (4/16) notes that on Thursday, the
Alexandria Veterans Affairs Medical Center "will sponsor an educational class designed to assist women in identifying sources of stress, its effects on those with diabetes as well as reviewing stress management techniques. The diabetic education class, 'Stress and How It Affects People with Diabetes,' will be held Thursday, April 16 at 10 a.m." in the hospital's "Women's Clinic Conference Room, Building 3, 3rd Floor."

13. WWII Vets In Eastern Visayas Soon To Receive Compensation. The Philippine Daily Inquirer (4/15, Gabieta) said World War II
vets "in Eastern Visayas are likely to receive their one-time lump-sum compensation from the US government this week, according to the regional Philippine Veterans Affairs Office (PVAO). Nenita Brazil, head of the PVAO regional field extension office, said the agency's central office in Manila informed her on Monday of the possible money release as relayed" by the US VA.

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
14.
In continuing coverage, the Birmingham (AL) Business Journal (4/16, DeButts) reports the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) "is partnering with the Veterans Affairs Nursing Academy in a five-year pilot program to expand educational opportunities for nursing students. UAB will participate in the two-year-old, $59 million virtual pilot program that offers learning opportunities for nursing students at VA facilities and funds faculty development of VA staff for additional faculty positions." US Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) announced and praised the partnership "in a Wednesday news release." The Hendersonville Times-News (4/16) reports, "Representatives of Western Carolina University's School of Nursing and the Charles Georges VA Medical Center in Asheville will announce the creation of a new partnership in nursing education at 11 a.m. Thursday. The partnership is federally funded" by the US VA.

Colleges Partnering With VA To Educate Nurses.

Vietnam Vet Receives Belated Purple Heart. The AP (4/16) 66year-old Robert McBride, a resident of Sparks, Nevada, "has finally received" a Purple Heart, "41 years after he was hurt in a mortar attack in the war in Vietnam." John Hansen, "national service officer for the National Disabled Veterans, said he was reviewing McBride's claim for benefits last year when he noticed that a recommendation was made in his records that he receive the Purple Heart due to his burn injuries." Hansen then contacted US Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)," who joined an effort to correct the record and pinned the medal on McBride Wednesday at the Veterans Administration's regional office in Reno." 16.
In continuing coverage, WJLA-TV Washington, DC (4/15, 12:11 p.m. ET) broadcast, "A Virginia funeral home faces" lawsuits "filed by the grandchildren of a retired Army colonel." The suits, which seek $60 million in damages from the home and its parent company Service Corporation International (SCI) allege that Col. Andrew DeGraff's "body was left to decompose...in a garage of the National Funeral Home in Falls Church." The AP (4/16, Barakat), which notes that four lawsuits were filed "separately...on behalf of four of DeGraff's grandchildren," reports, "In December 2003, SCI paid $100 million to settle a class-action lawsuit filed in Florida by about 700 families that accused company cemeteries of misplacing bodies, losing track of plots and in some cases digging up remains to make room for new graves."

15.

Lawsuits Filed Against National Funeral Home.

17. Veterans Cemeteries In Tennessee To Share Stimulus Funds. WVLT-TV Knoxville, TN (4/7, 11:03 p.m. ET) broadcast that according to
the Department of Defense, "Federal stimulus funds are coming to several Tennessee military and veterans facilities." Among those receiving funds is Tennessee Veterans Cemetery in Knoxville, "one of five state cemeteries sharing about" $1 million "for paint, new mowers, a utility vehicle, and monuments."

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
18. Louisiana VA Secretary At Military Order Of The Purple Heart Meeting. In continuing coverage, the AP (4/16) notes that in early May,
Louisiana Secretary of Veterans Affairs Lane Carson "will speak...at the Military Order of the Purple Heart's Louisiana meeting in Shreveport." The "order was created to help all veterans work with the Department of Veterans Affairs and file claims for benefits available to them."

19. Council On Stimulus Research Spending Holds First "Listening Session." CQ HealthBeat (4/16) reports, "The first 'listening
session'...on how" Federal funds "included in the stimulus law should be used on research to improve" the US healthcare system was held Tuesday at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The session "was organized by the Federal Coordinating Council for Comparative Effectiveness Research, a body created by the stimulus law, to help formulate research priorities." The council, "which includes representatives" from the "Department of Veterans Affairs, is expected to submit a report to President Obama by June 30."

20. Bilirakis Praised For Attempting To Lessen Tax Burden On Military Families. The last story in the syndicated "Sgt. Shaft" column, appearing
in the Washington Times (4/16, Fales), praises US Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL) "for introducing bipartisan legislation, H.R. 1624: the Military Personnel Income Tax Exclusion Act, to improve active-duty military pay and help military families during tough economic times." The bill, co-sponsored by US Rep. Christopher Carney (D-PA) "recognizes the superb commitment of service members and their families to our nation by providing a much-needed reduction" of their Federal income tax.

Ensure Timely, Best Care At VA Hospitals And Clinics. In a Seattle Times (4/15) op-ed, Timothy Williams, the former director of the Walla Walla Veterans Affairs Medical Center and the VA Puget Sound Healthcare System, and Joseph Manley, the former director of the Spokane VA Medical Center, wrote, "The health care our nation's veterans receive should never be compromised because of partisan gridlock or budget train wrecks. Congress needs to take the politics out of veterans' health care for good by ensuring sufficient, timely and predictable funding through advance appropriations. President Obama promised it," and now, Congress "must do its part: Pass the Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act this year." 22. 23. Trying To Better Serving Those Who Served US. Valley Veterans Hope Valley Still Gets Hospital.
The Omaha (NE) World-Herald (4/16, Ruggles). The KVEO-

21.

TV Harlingen, TX (4/15, Reyes) website.

24. National Commander Makes Visit To American Legion Post 8. The Lexington (KY) Dispatch (4/15, Doss-Raines).

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
25. 26. New GI Bill Explained At Howell News Conference.
Michigan's Livingston Community News (4/15, Tolen).

Charlotte-Area Residents Win SBA Awards. The Charlotte (NC) Observer (4/15, Bell) said the US Small Business Administration announced on Tuesday that Joseph Marchesani, "president of Markee Distributors LLC in Waxhaw, has been named the 2009 N.C. Veterans Small Business Champion of the Year." 27. 28. 29. 30. Air Force Awards WWII Pilot For Valor.
The Greenville (AL) Advocate (4/15).

Emotional Tribute To Tomb Of The Unknowns.

The KSLA-TV

Shreveport, LA (4/14, Wolf) website.

Sailor Shields Wounded Veteran From Flames On I-5.

The

Orange County (CA) Register (4/15, Schelden).

Gates Critical Of Pentagon's Handling Of Iraq, Afghanistan.

The Wall Street Journal (4/16, Spiegel, 2.07M) reports that during a speech to the Air War College, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates told "an audience of young officers that military brass for too long viewed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as 'exotic distractions.'" Gates went on to say, "I kept running into the fact that the Department of Defense as an institution -- which routinely complained that the rest of the government was not at war -- was itself not on a war footing, even as young Americans were fighting and dying every day." His speech at the Air War College, which "is to be followed in the next two days by similar addresses to the Navy and Army's leading war colleges," served as "the first sign that Mr. Gates intends to use those criticisms as the driving argument behind his politically contentious overhaul of weapons purchasing."

31. US Investing In Improved Batteries For Intelligence, Military. USA Today (4/16, Eisler) reports, "The nation's spies and soldiers need
new batteries - smaller, longer-lived batteries - and the government is investing tens of millions of dollars in companies that are trying to create them." Because "today's intelligence and military missions rely more and more on high-tech gadgetry," "the government's investments in companies that develop batteries and other portable, longduration power sources have skyrocketed. Much of the bankrolling is being done through companies set up by the government to invest in businesses that are developing technology with national security applications."

32. Pentagon Abolishes Controversial Public Diplomacy Office. The New York Times (4/16, A12, Shanker) reports that senior officials said
that Michele A. Flournoy, the new under secretary of defense for policy, decided to abolish the Defense Department office for support to public diplomacy, which was "responsible for coordinating Defense Department information campaigns overseas," as part of "an effort by the Obama administration to distance itself from past practices that

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
some military officers called propaganda" and "ensure that global communications efforts by the Defense Department and military would be aligned with the rest of the government." Both "military and civilian critics said the office...overstepped its mandate during the final years of the Bush administration by trying to organize information operations that violated Pentagon guidelines for accuracy and transparency." According to officials, the Pentagon will "now play a supporting role to the White House and the State Department in communicating government messages to foreign audiences, with the efforts no longer centralized in one place but assigned to each Pentagon policy office and regional military combatant commander." Still, "the Defense Department has far greater resources in money, trained communications personnel and broadcast and print technology than any other government agency or department."

AARP Report Highlights Rising Drug Prices. The AP (4/15, Werner) reports the AARP's annual study indicates that "prices of the most popular brand-name prescription drugs are on the rise even as the economy falters," including "the 219 most widely used brand-name drugs," while "prices of generic drugs are falling and more and more seniors are making the switch to generics, a trend the powerful senior citizens' lobby hopes to encourage." The group "also wants policy makers to focus on how to bring drug prices down as Congress prepares legislation to reshape the nation's costly health care system." AARP's public policy director, John Rother, said, "Just about everybody in today's economy is feeling some economic pressures and it does not help that the drugs you take to keep healthy are much more expensive than last year. I think this makes the case for health reform." 34. More Grade School, High School Students Being Taught Online. ABC World News (4/15, story 8, 2:25, Gibson, 8.2M) reported on "what
some say is the next revolution in education. ... More and more high schools and even grade school students are being taught online. It's a way for school districts to cut costs, but does online education work?" ABC (Osunsami) profiled Georgia Virtual Academy, "an online grade school" where a student's teacher "could easily be hundreds of miles away. ... There are a good number of educators who believe that this type of learning will someday replace traditional classrooms." However, some educators are "worried the students are having trouble with state tests." Andrew Broy, Georgia Associate Superintendent: "I think they did fairly well in English and language arts area, but the Virtual Academy did struggle in the math content scores."

33.

35.

On the Hill:

Congress is in spring recess.

House: Not in session. Reconvenes 2 p.m. April 21. Senate: Not in session. Reconvenes 2 p.m. April 20.

36.

Today In History:

Events


73 – Masada, a Jewish fortress, falls to the Romans after several months of siege, ending the Jewish Revolt.

News From Around the Country April 16, 2009
    

      

          

1746 – The Battle of Culloden takes place. 1799 – Napoleonic Wars: The Battle of Mount Tabor – Napoleon drives Ottoman Turks across the River Jordan near Acre. 1862 – American Civil War: The Battle at Lee's Mills in Virginia. 1862 – American Civil War: A bill ending slavery in the District of Columbia becomes law. 1863 – American Civil War: The Siege of Vicksburg – ships led by Union Admiral David Dixon Porter move through heavy Confederate artillery fire on approach to Vicksburg, Mississippi. 1881 – In Dodge City, Kansas, Bat Masterson fights his last gun battle. 1912 – Harriet Quimby becomes the first woman to fly an airplane across the English Channel. 1919 – Mohandas Gandhi organizes a day of "prayer and fasting" in response to the British slaughter of Indian protesters in the Amritsar Massacre. 1922 – The Treaty of Rapallo, in which Germany and the Soviet Union reestablish diplomatic relations, is signed. 1925 – During the Communist St Nedelya Church assault in Sofia, 150 are killed and 500 are wounded. 1941 – World War II: The Italian convoy Duisburg, directed to Tunisia, is attacked and destroyed by British ships. 1941 – Bob Feller of the Cleveland Indians throws the only Opening Day nohitter in the history of Major League Baseball, beating the Chicago White Sox 10. 1945 – The Red Army begins the final assault on German forces around Berlin. 1945 – The United States Army liberates Nazi Sonderlager (high security) Prisoner of War camp Oflag IV-C (better known as Colditz Castle). 1945 – More than 7,000 die when the German refugee ship Goya is sunk by a Soviet submarine torpedo. 1947 – Bernard Baruch coins the term "Cold War" to describe the relationship between the United States and the Soviet Union. 1953 – Queen Elizabeth II launches the Royal Yacht Britannia. 1963 – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. pens his famous Letter from Birmingham Jail while incarcerated in Birmingham, Alabama for protesting against segregation. 1964 – Great Train Robbery – 12 men are sentenced to a total of 307 years. 1972 – Apollo program: The launch of Apollo 16 from Cape Canaveral, Florida. 1990 – The "Doctor of Death", Jack Kevorkian, goes through with his first assisted suicide. 2004 – The super liner Queen Mary 2 embarks on her first Trans-Atlantic crossing, linking the golden age of ocean travel to the modern age of ocean travel. 2007 – Virginia Tech massacre: The deadliest mass shooting in modern American history. The gunman, Seung-Hui Cho, shoots 32 people to death and injures 23 others before committing suicide.


				
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