What Happened in December 1997

Historical Events

  • Dec 1 GS Warrior guard Latrell Sprewell, attacks his coach P J Carlesimo
  • Dec 1 Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Davenport IA on KORB 93.5 FM
  • Dec 1 Westinghouse formally changes its name to CBS
  • Dec 2 MCI Center opens in Washington, D.C., Wizards vs SuperSonics
  • Dec 3 "1776" opens at Gershwin Theater NYC
  • Dec 3 Golden State Warrior guard Latrell Sprewell, four-year, $32 million, contract terminated for attacking his coach P J Carlesimo
  • Dec 4 "Diary of Anne Frank" opens at Music Box Theater NYC
  • Dec 4 NBA suspends Latrell Sprewell for 1 year for attacking his coach
  • Dec 4 Nizar Hamdoon warns that Iraq will not allow oil to flow during a third six-month phase of the UN's oil-for-food sale until the UN approves an aid distribution plan
  • Dec 5 1st Game at Wash Capitals' MCI Center vs Fla Panthers
  • Dec 5 STS 87 (Columbia 24) lands
  • Dec 6 6th SEC Championship Game: #3 Tennessee beats #11 Auburn, 30-29
  • Dec 7 Amy Fruhwirth & Clarence Rose win LPGA J C Penney Classic
  • Dec 8 8th Billboard Music Awards: LeAnn Rimes & Spice Girls win

Film release premierFilm Premier

Dec 9 "Tomorrow Never Dies", 18th James Bond film starring Pierce Brosnan and Michelle Yeoh, premieres in London

  • Dec 11 "Sunshine Boys" opens at Lyceum Theater NYC
  • Dec 11 Federal judge orders Microsoft not to bundle IE4 in Windows
  • Dec 11 Delegates from 150 industrial nations attending a UN climate conference in Kyoto, Japan, reach agreement to control heat-trapping greenhouse gases
  • Dec 12 Carlos the Jackal, "professional revolutionary", goes on trial in Paris
  • Dec 12 Florida releases Alex Arias, the last original Marlin
  • Dec 12 Japanese train builders (Maglev) claim world speed record at 332 MPH
  • Dec 12 Red Sox sign Pedro Martinez to record 6 year $69 million contract
  • Dec 12 SWAT team shoots John E Armstrong in Fla, freeing 2 young hostages
  • Dec 12 TWA 800 hearings end

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 12 Fed judge sentences Autumn Jackson, who claims to be Bill Cosby's daughter, to 26 months for trying to extort $40 million from him

Actor/Comedian Bill Cosby
Actor/Comedian
Bill Cosby
  • Dec 13 63rd Heisman Trophy Award: Charles Woodson, Michigan (CB)
  • Dec 14 "View From the Bridge" opens at Criterion Theater, NYC
  • Dec 14 Juli Inkster & Dottie Pepper win LPGA Diners Club Matches

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 14 Phoenix Coyote Mike Gartner is 5th NHLer to score 700 goals

NHL Star Mike Gartner
NHL Star
Mike Gartner

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 15 SF 49ers retire Joe Montana's #16

NFL Quarterback Joe Montana
NFL Quarterback
Joe Montana

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 16 President Clinton names his Labrador retriever "Buddy"

42nd US President Bill Clinton
42nd US President
Bill Clinton
  • Dec 18 HTML 4.0 is published by the World Wide Web Consortium.
  • Dec 19 MTV drops video "Smack My Bitch Up" by Prodigy
  • Dec 21 Detroit Lions Barry Sanders is 3rd to run for 2,000 yards in a season
  • Dec 21 Detroit Lions linebacker Reggie Brown, knocked unconscious in game
  • Dec 22 Hunter Tylo awarded $4 million in Melrose Place breach of contract
  • Dec 22 Merck baldness pill for men approved by FDA
  • Dec 22 Nancy Kerrigan & Tonya Harding pre-record a show to air on FOX on Feb 5
  • Dec 22 Acteal massacre: Attendees at a prayer meeting of Roman Catholic activists for indigenous causes in the small village of Acteal in the Mexican state of Chiapas are massacred by paramilitary forces.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 23 Chicago Bulls coach Phil Jackson is quickest to reach 500 wins (682 games)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 23 Colorado Avalanche Jari Kurri is 8th NHLer to score 600 career goals

NHL Star Jari Kurri
NHL Star
Jari Kurri
  • Dec 23 Terry Nichols found guilty of manslaughter in Oklahoma bombing
  • Dec 23 US Agriculture Dept estimates it costs $149,820 to raise a child to 18
  • Dec 24 1st time a Channukah candle is officially lit in Vatican City
  • Dec 24 The Sid El-Antri massacre (or Sidi Lamri) in Algeria kills 50-100 people.
  • Dec 24 The Dominican Republic becomes a member of the Berne Convention copyright treaty.
  • Dec 25 For 1st time US movie box office receipts pass $6 billion

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 25 Jerry Seinfeld says this is the final season of his TV show

Comedian Jerry Seinfeld
Comedian
Jerry Seinfeld
  • Dec 26 The Soufriere Hills volcano on the island of Montserrat explodes, creating a small tsunami offshore.
  • Dec 27 Protestant paramilitary leader Billy Wright is assassinated in Northern Ireland.
  • Dec 28 Sting beats Hollywood Hogan for WCW Championship
  • Dec 29 Carquest Bowl 8: Georgia Tech beats West Virginia, 35-30
  • Dec 29 Hong Kong begins slaughtering all its chickens to prevent bird flu
  • Dec 29 Orville Lynn Majors, 36, arrested for many deaths under his care
  • Dec 29 Russia signs agreement to build a $3B nuclear power plant in China
  • Dec 29 Cricket Women's World Cup: Australia defeats New Zealand by 5 wickets
  • Dec 30 An abandoned building collapses on NY's 42nd St, no one hurt
  • Dec 30 In the worst incident in Algeria's insurgency, the Wilaya of Relizane massacres, 400 people are killed from four villages.
  • Dec 31 Intel cuts price of Pentium II-233 MHz from $401 to $268
  • Dec 31 Marv Levy, retires as coach of Buffalo Bills
  • Dec 31 Microsoft buys Hotmail email service for $400 million and re-launches it as MSN Hotmail
  • Dec 31 More Swedes died than were born in 1997, 1st time since 1809
  • Dec 31 Orlando Hernandez, half-brother of pitcher Livan, defects from Cuba
  • Dec 31 South African & US surgeons separate Zambian Siamese twins joined at the head
  • Dec 31 27th Fiesta Bowl: #10 Kansas State beats #14 Syracuse, 35-18

Famous Weddings


HeartWedding of Interest

Dec 6 ABC's World News Tonight news anchor Peter Jennings (59) weds Kayce Freed in Bridgehampton, New York

Journalist and T.V. News Anchor Peter Jennings
Journalist and T.V. News Anchor
Peter Jennings

HeartWedding of Interest

Dec 23 Woody Allen, 62 weds Soon-Yi Previn 27, adopted daughter of Mia Farrow

Actor, Screenwriter & Director Woody Allen
Actor, Screenwriter & Director
Woody Allen
  • Dec 25 Actress Rue McClanahan (64) weds actor-producer Morrow Wilson (58) at Manhattan's Waldorf-Astoria

HeartWedding of Interest

Dec 28 Actor Robert Carlyle (36) weds makeup artist Anastasia Shirley in Scotland

HeartWedding of Interest

Dec 29 Actress Cate Blanchett (28) weds screenwriter Andrew Upton (31) at Blue Mountains National Park in New South Wales, Australia

HeartWedding of Interest

Dec 31 "The Fresh Prince" Will Smith (43) weds actress Jada Pinkett (40) in Baltimore, Maryland

Person of interestPerson of Interest

Dec 31 Academy Award-winning actress Helen Mirren (52) weds The Devil's Advocate director Taylor Hackford (53) at the Ardersier Parish Church near Inverness in the Scottish Highlands

Actress Helen Mirren
Actress
Helen Mirren

Famous Divorces


Broken heartDivorce of Interest

Dec 10 Motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel (59) divorces Linda Joan Bork after 38 years of marriage

Motorcycle Daredevil Evel Knievel
Motorcycle Daredevil
Evel Knievel

Famous Deaths

  • Dec 1 Denis Gerald Barrington, artist, dies at 67
  • Dec 1 Stephane Grappelli, French jazz violinist, dies at 89
  • Dec 1 Michel Bélanger, French Canadian businessman and banker (b. 1929)
  • Dec 1 Endicott Peabody, 62nd Governor of Massachusetts (b. 1920)
  • Dec 2 Shirley Crabtree, British professional wrestler (b. 1930)
  • Dec 2 Michael Hedges, American guitarist known for originality (b. 1953)
  • Dec 3 Marian Kratochwil, artist, dies at 91
  • Dec 3 Steve Hamilton, pitcher (NY Yankees), dies of cancer at 63
  • Dec 4 David Abell Wood, priest, dies at 72
  • Dec 4 Richard Vernon, British actor (Gandhi, Hard Days Night), dies at 72
  • Dec 5 Colin Franklin, doctor, dies at 67
  • Dec 5 Daphne Fielding, socialite/writer, dies at 93
  • Dec 6 Alan Mouncer, film director/producer, dies at 68
  • Dec 6 Eddie Myers, British WWII soldier and engineer, dies at 91
  • Dec 6 Eliot Daniel, composer (I Love Lucy theme), dies at 89
  • Dec 7 Billy Bremner, Scottish footballer dies at 54 from a suspected heart attack
  • Dec 8 Bob Bell, clown (WGN's 1st Bozo), dies at 75
  • Dec 8 Leon Poliakov, historian, dies at 87
  • Dec 9 Tamara Geva, Russian-born dancer and actress, dies at 91
  • Dec 10 Violet Carlson, stage dancer/singer, dies at 97
  • Dec 11 Kenneth WIlliam Gatland, aerospace scientist, dies at 73
  • Dec 12 Yevgeniy Landis, Russian mathematician (b. 1921)
  • Dec 13 Alexander Oppenheim, mathematician, dies at 94
  • Dec 13 Martin Carter, poet/critic, dies at 70
  • Dec 13 Rafael Jose Fernandez de la Calzada y Ferrer, restaurateur, dies at 83
  • Dec 14 Owen Barfield, philosopher of language, dies at 99
  • Dec 14 Robert Sutton, electronics engineer, dies at 82
  • Dec 14 Stubby Kaye, actor (Guys & Dolls, Sweet Charity), dies at 79
  • Dec 14 Kurt Winter, Canadian musician (The Guess Who) (b. 1946)
  • Dec 15 Pananayiotis Taki Vatikiotis, middle east scholar, dies at 69
  • Dec 16 Lillian Disney, widow of animator Walt Disney, dies of a stroke at 98
  • Dec 16 Nicolette Larson, singer (Lotta Love), dies from brain seizure at 45
  • Dec 16 Richard Warwick, actor (Johnny Dangerously, Sebastine, If), dies at 52
  • Dec 17 Reginald Victor Jones, scientist, dies at 86
  • Dec 18 Chris Farley, comedian (SNL, Tommy Boy), dies at 33
  • Dec 19 David Norman Schramm, physicist, dies at 52
  • Dec 19 Masaru Ibuka, co-founder (Sony Corp), dies at 89
  • Dec 19 Jimmy Rogers, American blues musician, dies at 73
  • Dec 20 Dawn Steel, American filmmaker, 1st woman to head Hollywood studio, dies of cancer at 51
  • Dec 20 Denise Levertov, poet, dies at 74
  • Dec 20 Vincent Ciccone, inventor (Blow-Pops candy), dies at 81
  • Dec 21 Bruce Woodcock, English boxer, European Heavyweight Champion, dies at 76
  • Dec 21 Juzo Itami, film director/actor (Lord Jim, Yuuguremade), dies at 64
  • Dec 21 Michael Lyne, air-marshal, dies at 78
  • Dec 22 Douglas Ranger, surgeon, dies at 81
  • Dec 22 Hugh Edward Conway Seymour, 8th Marquess of Hertford, dies at 67
  • Dec 22 John Pinkerton, English computer scientist who designed the first business computer in England, the LEO computer, dies at 78
  • Dec 22 Johnny Coles, trumpeter, dies at 71
  • Dec 22 Juzo Itami, Japanese director, commits suicide at 64
  • Dec 23 Austin Whitaker, schoolmaster classical scholar/archivist, dies at 90
  • Dec 23 Brian Malzard Foss, psychologist, dies at 76
  • Dec 23 Donald Gunn MacRae, sociologist, dies at 76
  • Dec 23 Hrvoje Horvatic, video artist, dies at 39
  • Dec 23 Keith Bentley, international racing cyclist, dies at 72
  • Dec 23 Stanley Cortez, cinematographer (Magnificent Ambersons), dies at 89
  • Dec 24 Alan Fluck, musical educationalist, dies at 69
  • Dec 24 Anthea Joseph, music producer, dies at 57
  • Dec 24 James Komack, producer (Courtship of Eddie's Father), dies at 67

Person of interestPerson of Interest

Dec 24 Toshiro Mifune, Japanese actor (Shogun), dies at 77

Actor & Writer Toshiro Mifune
Actor & Writer
Toshiro Mifune
  • Dec 24 Pierre Péladeau, Quebec businessman, founder of Quebecor (b. 1925)
  • Dec 25 Anatoli Boukreev, mountaineer, dies at 39
  • Dec 25 Denver Pyle, actor (Dukes of Hazzard), dies at 77
  • Dec 25 Giorgio Strehler, theatre director, dies at 76
  • Dec 25 Laurence Gower, academic, dies at 84
  • Dec 26 John Hinde, photographer/circus promoter, dies at 81
  • Dec 26 John Whitley, air-Marshal, dies at 92
  • Dec 26 Cornelius Castoriadis, Greek philosopher and economist (b. 1922)
  • Dec 27 Brendan Gill, American critic (The New Yorker), dies at 83
  • Dec 27 Dorothy Stroud, garden historian, dies at 87
  • Dec 27 Ewart G Abner Jr, president (Motown Records), dies at 74
  • Dec 27 Tom Hudson, artist/teacher, dies at 75
  • Dec 27 Billy Wright, Irish Protestant paramilitary leader (b. 1960)
  • Dec 28 George Fleming, cyclist, dies at 80
  • Dec 28 James Lees-Milne, English writer and architectural historian, dies at 89
  • Dec 28 Ronald Clive Williams, actor/comedian, dies at 68
  • Dec 29 (Hanlon) Pat Clarke, cyclist, dies at 82
  • Dec 29 Robert Steel, academic, dies at 82
  • Dec 30 Shinichi Hoshi, Japanese novelist (b. 1926)
  • Dec 31 76 law enforcement officers, killed by felons in US this year
  • Dec 31 Dominique de Menil, arts patron/human rights advocate, dies at 89
  • Dec 31 Floyd Cramer, pianist (Nashville Sound), dies of cancer at 64
  • Dec 31 Lillian Billie Dove Bohney, actress, dies at 96
  • Dec 31 Michael Kennedy, son of Robert F. Kennedy, dies in ski accident at 39