Day in History: Coral Sea; Kent St.; Thatcher; 1st Grammys; Efrem Zimbalist Dies

Efrem Zimbalist Jr., popular television actor from the late 1950s through the middle 1970s, has died. Zimbalist was a leading character in "77 Sunset Strip', a detective series, as well as "The FBI" with cases portrayed from the FBI files. He was 95.
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LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Efrem Zimbalist Jr., the son of famous musicians who gained television stardom in the 1950s-60s hit "77 Sunset Strip" and later "The FBI," has died at age 95.
Family friend Judith Moose says Zimbalist died Friday at his ranch in Solvang.
Zimbalist's cool, deductive manner made him the ideal star as the private detective ferreting out Hollywood bad guys in "77 Sunset Strip" and later as the government investigator in "The FBI."
He was the son of violin virtuoso Efrem Zimbalist and Alma Gluck, an acclaimed opera singer. Young Efrem studied the violin too but he developed more interest in acting.
His daughter, Stephanie, also took up acting -- and small-screen detective work, in the 1980s TV series "Remington Steele." Her father had a recurring role as a con man.


Today in History
Today is Sunday, May 4, the 124th day of 2014. There are 241 days left in the year.

On May 4 in history –
In 1776, Rhode Island declared its freedom from England, two months before the Declaration of Independence was adopted.
In 1886, at Haymarket Square in Chicago, a labor demonstration for an 8-hour work day turned into a deadly riot when a bomb exploded.
In 1904, the United States took over construction of the Panama Canal.
In 1932, mobster Al Capone, convicted of income-tax evasion, entered the federal penitentiary in Atlanta. (Capone was later transferred to Alcatraz Island.)
In 1942, the Battle of the Coral Sea, the first naval clash fought entirely with carrier aircraft, began in the Pacific during World War II. (The outcome was considered a tactical victory for Imperial Japan, but ultimately a strategic one for the Allies.)
In 1970, Ohio National Guardsmen opened fire during an anti-war protest at Kent State University, killing four students and wounding nine others.
In 1974, Expo '74, a six-month-long world's fair, opened in Spokane, Wash.
In 1979, Conservative Party leader Margaret Thatcher became Britain's first female prime minister after the Tories ousted the incumbent Labor government in parliamentary elections.
In 1989, fired White House aide Oliver North was convicted of shredding documents and two other crimes and acquitted of nine other charges stemming from the Iran-Contra affair. (However, the three convictions were later overturned on appeal.)
In 1994, Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO leader Yasser Arafat signed an accord on Palestinian autonomy that granted self-rule in the Gaza Strip and Jericho.
In 2013, a limousine taking nine women to a bachelorette party erupted in flames on the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge over San Francisco Bay, killing five of the passengers, including the bride-to-be.

On May 3 in entertainment history –

In 1957, the "Alan Freed Show" debuted on ABC. The first guests on his show included the Del-Vikings and Screamin' Jay Hawkins.
In 1959, the first Grammy Awards ceremony was held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Domenico Modugno won Record of the Year and Song of the Year for "Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)"; Henry Mancini won Album of the Year for "The Music from Peter Gunn." The Champs and the Kingston Trio were also winners.
In 1964, the Moody Blues formed in Birmingham, England.
In 1964, the daytime drama "Another World" began a 35-year run on NBC-TV.
In 1970, Neil Young wrote "Ohio" after four Kent State University students were killed on this date by U.S. National Guardsmen.
In 1995, actor Gary Busey was found unconscious at his home in Malibu, California, apparently from a cocaine overdose.
In 2009, actor, comedian and director Dom DeLuise, 75, died in Santa Monica, Calif.