Way back when: Today in history
BY GENE CURTIS
Monday, January 21, 2013
1/21/13 at 2:33 AM
1924 - Russian dictator dies
Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, the first leader of the Soviet Union, died of heart trouble at the age of 54 at his country home near Moscow and plans were being made for a state funeral at the Kremlin in Moscow's Red Square. Thousands, many singing revolutionary songs, waited in long lines to walk past Lenin's bier for a final look in spite of extreme cold as bonfires blazed outside. Joseph Stalin, a fellow revolutionary, succeeded Lenin as the country's leader and the city of Petrograd was renamed Leningrad in honor of Lenin.
1965 - State justices ousted
Republican House leader G.T. Blankenship stunned Oklahoma legislators with an announcement that three state Supreme Court justices had accepted bribes in a tax case eight years earlier. Blankenship said Justice N.S. Corn admitted he accepted $150,000 and had given part of the money to Justices Earl Welch and N.B. Johnson. Corn, in his 80s, was serving a federal prison term for income tax evasion when he made the claim. Welch claimed innocence but resigned from the court and later was convicted of income tax evasion and sentenced to prison. Johnson was impeached and ousted from the court after being convicted in the Senate. Neither Welch nor Johnson was ever tried for taking bribes.
2002 - Lava touches off Congo blast
About 50 people who were trying to scoop fuel into plastic containers from a burned-out gas station in Goma, Congo, were killed when lava touched off a massive explosion and a series of fireballs. The lava was from an eruption of Mount Nyiragongo that had destroyed about 40 percent of the city earlier, causing tens of thousands of people to flee but the streets were filled with people again and many shops were open again. Lava apparently ignited fumes of gasoline and diesel fuel at the station, detonating a series of massive fireballs that sent clouds of jet-black smoke into the sky.
2010 - Edwards admits child
Former Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards admitted widely held suspicions - he was the father of a daughter born to his former mistress. "I am Quinn's father," the former North Carolina senator said. "It was wrong for me ever to deny she was my daughter and hopefully one day, when she understands, she will forgive me." Edwards, 56, had long denied that the girl, Frances Quinn Hunter, was his, even after he admitted cheating on his wife with the child's mother, Rielle Hunter. She had been hired to shoot behind-the-scenes video of him for his 2008 presidential campaign. Elizabeth Edwards was dying of cancer.