Highlights: In 1937, American composer and pianist George Gershwin, whose works included “Rhapsody in Blue,” “Concerto in F,” “An American in Paris,” and “Porgy and Bess,” died at a Los Angeles hospital of a brain tumor; he was 38. In 1804, Vice President Aaron Burr mortally wounded former Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton during a pistol duel in Weehawken, N.J. In 1859, Big Ben, the great bell inside the famous London clock tower, chimed for the first time. In 1960, the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee was first published by J.B. Lippincott and Co. In 1989, actor and director Laurence Olivier died in Steyning, West Sussex, England, at age 82.
Ten years ago: Lawmakers balked at moving the Coast Guard and the Federal Emergency Management Agency into a new Homeland Security Department despite pleas from senior Cabinet officials to stick to President George W. Bush’s blueprint. (Both agencies did end up being included in the new department.)
Five years ago: Lady Bird Johnson, the former first lady who’d championed conservation and worked tenaciously for the political career of her husband, President Lyndon Johnson, died in Austin, Texas, at age 94.
One year ago: Rupert Murdoch’s media empire was besieged by accusations that two more of his British newspapers engaged in hacking, deception and privacy violations. So Yeon Ryu won the U.S. Women’s Open golf tournament, defeating fellow South Korean Hee Kyung Seo by three shots in a three-hole playoff.
It’s Wednesday, July 11, the 193rd day of 2012. There are 173 days left in the year.
Actor Tab Hunter is 81. Actress Susan Seaforth Hayes is 69. Singer Jeff Hanna (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band) is 65. Ventriloquist-actor Jay Johnson is 63. Actor Bruce McGill is 62. Singer Bonnie Pointer is 62. Actor Stephen Lang is 60. Actress Sela Ward is 56. Reggae singer Michael Rose (Black Uhuru) is 55. Singer Peter Murphy is 55. Jazz musician Kirk Whalum is 54. Singer Suzanne Vega is 53. Rock guitarist Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi) is 53. Actor Gred Grunberg is 46. Wildlife expert Jeff Corwin is 45. Actor Justin Chambers is 42. Actress Leisha Hailey is 41. Actor Michael Rosenbaum is 40. Rapper Lil’ Kim is 37.
— From wire reports