Bono

Bono was born Paul Hewson on this day in 1960 in Dublin, Ireland.  He took the stage name of Bono Vox as the lead singer of U2, which rose to fame as one of the biggest rock bands of all time. Beyond rock’n’roll, Bono is an outspoken activist and supporter of many humanitarian causes.

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MLK Assassinated

Martin Luther King Jr. lost his life on this day in 1968.  He was shot and killed while he was on the balcony of his motel room in Memphis, Tennessee.  He was only 39 years old.

The Lorraine Motel, where Dr. King was assassinated, is now the site of the National Civil Rights Museum. The wreath marks the approximate place Dr. King was standing at the time. source: wikimedia commons

Learn more about the life and death of Dr. King:

Kurt Cobain

Kurt Cobain was born on this day in 1967 in Aberdeen, Washington. He would become the lead singer of Nirvana and one of the leading figures of the Seattle music scene of the 90’s.  Seattle bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden became global superstars at the centre of what some called the “Grunge” movement. Despite his wealth and fame, Cobain was a troubled young man who succumbed to depression and drug addiction. He took his own life in 1994.

Learn more about Kurt Cobain. Check out some of the books we have and some of these links:

Bob Marley

BobMarleyReggae legend Bob Marley was born on this day in 1945 in Nine Miles, Jamaica. Sadly, he died far too young, at only 36 in 1981.  For more on the life of this amazing artist, take a look at some of the many books we have here in the school library. Online you can also check out:

Hank Aaron

source: Hand Aaron State Trail.org

Henry “Hank” Aaron was born on this day in 1934.  He became a Major League Baseball player in 1954 and played in a remarkable career all the way until 1976.  “Hammerin’ Hank” is best known for breaking Babe Ruth’s all-time home run record, surpassing the Babe’s 714 in 1974. Hank Aaron would finish in 1976 with 755 home runs.  Many people consider that Aaron’s mark is still the legitimate record, as it would be broken in recent years under the cloud of steroid use and accusations of cheating with PEDs.  More impressive is that Aaron displayed such tremendous skills for so long, and in the face of some horrific hate and threats of violence. As Aaron approached Babe Ruth’s record, he faced an increasing number of messages of hate and threats to his life by racists who couldn’t accept that a black man was accomplishing such a feat.  Aaron faced the hate with courage and grace. For more on Hank Aaron:

Baseball Hall of Fame

Baseball Reference

755 Homeruns.com

International Civil Rights Walk of Fame

Don Cherry

source: CBC.ca

Canadian icon Don Cherry was born on this day in 1934.  After life as a professional Hockey Player and Coach, Cherry turned to Broadcasting, where he achieved his greatest fame.  He is one of the most controversial figures in Canada, criticized by some, loved by others.  But either way, for decades Cherry has been “must-watch TV” for millions of Canadians. He is a passionate Canadian patriot and commentator on the game of hockey. He was voted to seventh place in the CBC production of The Greatest Canadian in 2004.

Rosa Parks

source: wikimedia commons

One of the icons of the US Civil Rights movement looked an unlikely hero but proved to be someone whose strength of character belied her appearance. Rosa Parks was born on this day in 1934.  In the face of the overt racism of 1950’s America, Rosa famously refused to give up her seat on the bus, as black people were expected to do for white people. She was arrested, and the resulting Montgomery Bus Boycott proved to be one of foundational events of the Civil Rights Movement. For more on Rosa Parks:

Rosa Parks Legacy

International Civil Rights Walk of Fame

NAACP

 

 

Jackie Robinson

jroPro baseball Hall of Famer Jackie Robinson was born on this day in 1919. An outstanding player who would go on to win MVP awards and Championships, Robinson will forever be remembered as the first African-American to play Major League Baseball when he joined the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. He stood up to unspeakable racism with dignity and grace. In 1997, on the 50th anniversary of his breaking the colour barrier, Major League Baseball retired Jackie’s number, 42.

Muhammad Ali

aliCassius Clay was born on this day in 1942.  After winning a Gold Medal in the Olympics for the United States, he would turn professional and go on to become the Heavyweight Champion of the World. He changed his name to Muhammad Ali as part of his conversion to Islam.  Ali would win the Heavyweight Title an unprecedented three times, most famously regaining the title in 1974, seven years after having his title stripped from him in 1967.  When Ali was drafted for military service by the US government, likely for duty in Vietnam, Ali refused induction as a conscientious objector, citing his religious beliefs and his opposition to the Vietnam War.  Ali famously told the world that “No, I am not going 10,000 miles to help murder, kill, and burn other people to simply help continue the domination of white slavemasters over dark people the world over. This is the day and age when such evil injustice must come to an end”

Ali was arrested and found guilty of draft evasion. Boxing authorities stripped him of his title and banned him from the sport for nearly 4 years.  Although the Supreme Court eventually overturned his criminal conviction, he had lost his title and many years of his athletic prime.  Remarkably, he fought his way back to the top, defeating George Forman in the legendary “Rumble in the Jungle” in 1974. After losing the title again in 1978 to Leon Spinks, Ali won the rematch to regain the Belt for an unprecedented third Heavyweight Boxing Title.

ali1 ali2 ali3Ali is arguably the greatest athlete in history. In his prime, he was certainly the most famous and recognizable athlete in the entire world. Ali was a polarizing figure, as many hated him for his brash, self-aggrandizing demeanor and his outspoken religious and political statements. However, even more people loved him. To a generation of people all over the globe, Ali was a counter-cultural hero who represented the struggle against racism, against war and against the conservative authorities of the day.

Find out more about Muhammad Ali:

www.ali.com

Muhammad Ali Center

The Greatest by Joyce Carol Oates

Guru Gobind Singh

GuruGobindSingh
source: discoversikhism.com

Sikhs in Canada and around the world observe the birthday of Guru Gobind Singh who was born in 1666 in Patna, India. He was the 10th and last of the (human) Gurus of Sikhism. He established the Khalsa, the organization of men and women baptized into the Sikh faith. He also established the Guru Granth Sahib, the holy book of Sikhism, as the final Guru for the Sikh people. For more on Guru Gobind Singh and the Sikh faith, check out some of the following links: