On this day: A look at major events happened on 8 January


Like every other day of the calendar, 8 January has witnessed a number of incidents. Among them, some found their place in history owing to their importance. On this day in 1942, renowned physicist Stephen Hawking was born in Oxford, England. On the same day in 1997, the principality of Monaco celebrated the 700th anniversary of the Grimaldi family’s rule. A year later, on 8 January, one of the masterminds behind the 1993 terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center was sentenced to life in prison. In 2011, U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords was shot during a meeting but managed to survive. In 2016, Mexican criminal Joaquin Guzman, known as ‘El Chapo’, the head of the Sinaloa drug cartel, was arrested.

8 January- Historic Events

Stephen Hawking was born

On 8 January 1942, renowned English theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking was born in Oxford, England. Hawking’s primary research interests were in the area of general relativity, specifically the physics of black holes. He proposed in 1971 that multiple objects with up to one billion tonnes of mass but just the volume of a proton developed after the Big Bang, known as mini black holes. He used both quantum mechanics and relativity theory to support his idea of exploding black holes. He also worked with space-time singularities.

The 700th anniversary of the Grimaldi family celebrated in Monaco

On 8 January 1997, Monaco, during the rule of the then-Prince Rainier, commemorated a year-long celebration to mark the 700th anniversary of the reign of the Grimaldi family. When Francesco Grimaldi conquered Monaco in 1297, the House of Grimaldi, which had been created in Genoa in 1160 by Grimaldo Canella, became the centrepiece of the area. Every Prince of Monaco so far is a member of the House of Grimaldi. Currently, Albert II- Prince Rainier III’s son and heir- is the Sovereign Prince of Monaco as well as the head of the family.

Man responsible for 1993 World Trade Center terrorist attack given life sentence

Ramzi Ahmed Yousef, one of the masterminds behind the brutal 1993 terrorist bombing of the World Trade Center in New York, was sentenced to life in prison on 8 January 1998. On the day of the incident, a vehicle bomb detonated in a parking garage located below the World Trade Center complex. At the time, it was the bloodiest act of terrorism committed on American soil resulting in six fatalities and more than a thousand injuries.

US Representative Gabby Giffords shot

On 8 January 2011, US Representative Gabby Giffords, along with 18 others, was shot during a constituent meeting in a supermarket parking lot in Casas Adobes, Arizona. Six people, including a nine-year-old girl, lost their lives following the shootout. Giffords was shot through her head from point-blank range but survived. Jared Lee Loughner, a 22-year-old Tucson man, was arrested at the crime scene. He was the one who drew a pistol and shot Giffords before firing at other persons present there. He was charged with five offences by federal authorities, including attempting to murder a member of Congress.

Mexican criminal Joaquin Guzman arrested

On 8 January 2016, infamous Mexican criminal ‘El Chapo’ aka Joaquin Guzman, chief of the Sinaloa drug cartel, was arrested in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, following a shoot-out. Earlier on 11 July 2015, el Chapo escaped from custody at Altiplano prison near Toluca using a shaft beneath the shower inside his cell. He was transferred to the United States following his recapture. There he was found guilty of a number of offences, including drug smuggling, money laundering, and conspiracy to murder. In November 2018, his trial began under strict security, and later, he was given a life sentence.

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On this day: A look at major events happened on 8 January
On this day: A look at major events happened on 8 January
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