What Happened in May 2011

Historical Events

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 1 Pope John Paul II is beatified by his successor, Pope Benedict XVI.

264th Pope John Paul II
264th Pope
John Paul II
265th Pope  Benedict XVI
265th Pope
Benedict XVI

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 2 Osama bin Laden, the suspected mastermind behind the September 11 attacks and the FBI's most wanted man is killed by United States special forces in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

Islamic Militant & Terrorist Osama bin Laden
Islamic Militant & Terrorist
Osama bin Laden
  • May 2 The 2011 E. coli O104:H4 outbreak strikes Europe, mostly in Germany, leaving more than 30 people dead and many others sick from the bacteria outbreak.
  • May 6 The US Department of Labor states that 244,000 jobs were created in April, with 235,000 added in February and 221,000 in March, but unemployment continues to grow, reaching 9%
  • May 7 137th Kentucky Derby: John Velazquez aboard Animal Kingdom wins in 2:02.04

Film release premierFilm Premier

May 7 "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides", directed by Rob Marshall, starring Johnny Depp and Penélope Cruz, premieres in - opening weekend makes $350.6m

  • May 13 Portugal slips into double-dip recession after the economy contracts by 0.7% in the first quarter of 2011, with a 0.6% contraction in the last quarter of 2010, it is reported today
  • May 13 Romania officially leaves the recession after 2 years following economic growth of an annualised 1.6% in the first quarter
  • May 14 56th Eurovision Song Contest: Ell & Nikki for Azerbaijan wins singing "Running Scared" in Dusseldorf
  • May 15 "The Artist" directed by Michel Hazanavicius and starring Jean Dujardin and Bérénice Bejo premieres at the Cannes Film festival (Best Picture 2012)
  • May 16 Space shuttle Endeavour launches for its final commission in space
  • May 21 136th Preakness: Jesús Castañón aboard Shackleford wins in 1:56.47
  • May 22 An EF5 Tornado strikes the US city of Joplin, Missouri killing at least 158 people, the single deadliest US tornado since modern record keeping began in 1950.

Music awardsMusic Awards

May 22 19th Billboard Music Awards: Eminem, Recovery win

Rapper Eminem
  • May 22 64th Cannes Film Festival: "The Tree of Life" directed by Terrence Malick wins the Palme d'Or
  • May 22 57th British Academy Television Awards: "Harry & Paul" Best Comedy, "Sherlock" Best Drama
  • May 24 NHL Western Conference Finals: Vancouver Canucks beat San Jose Sharks, 4 games to 1

Event of interestEvent of Interest

May 25 Oprah Winfrey airs her last show, ending her twenty five year run of The Oprah Winfrey Show.

Talk show host Oprah Winfrey
Talk show host
Oprah Winfrey

Music awardsMusic Awards

May 25 46th Academy of Country Music Awards: Taylor Swift, Miranda Lambert & Brad Paisley win

Singer-songwriter Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift
  • May 27 NHL Eastern Conference Finals: Boston Bruins beat Tampa Bay Lightning, 4 games to 3
  • May 28 19th UEFA Champions League Final: Barcelona beats Manchester United 3-1 at London
  • May 29 Indianapolis 500: Dan Wheldon wins in 2:56:11.7267 (274.015 km/h)

Famous Weddings

  • May 7 "The Amazing Race" winners Meghan Rickey and Cheyne Whitney marry at the Hard Rock Hotel, San Diego
  • May 12 Victoria's Secret model Lily Aldridge (25) weds Kings of Leon singer Caleb Followill (29) at San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito, California
  • May 14 Country singer Blake Shelton (34) weds singer Miranda Lambert (27) at Don Strange Ranch in Boerne, Texas
  • May 15 Actress Tamera Mowry (32) weds Fox News Correspondent Adam Housley (39) at Villagio Inn & Spa in Napa, California
  • May 20 Actor Doug Hutchison (51) weds country singer Courtney Stodden (16) in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • May 21 TV actress Sara Rue (33) weds Kevin Price (35) at Bel Air Bay Club in Pacific Palisades, California
  • May 22 R&B singer Keyshia Cole (28) weds NBA Cleveland Cavaliers Daniel Gibson (25) in Cleveland, Ohio
  • May 28 Former American beauty queen Candice Crawford (24) weds Dallas Cowboys football quarterback Tony Romo (31) at Arlington Hall in Dallas, Texas
  • May 28 Actress and former "Clean House" host Niecy Nash (41) weds electrical engineer Jay Tucker at the Church Estate Vineyard in Malibu

Famous Deaths

  • May 1 Ted Lowe, English snooker commentator (b. 1920)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

May 2 Osama bin Laden, leader of al-Qaeda and 'the most wanted man in the world' (b. 1957)

Islamic Militant & Terrorist Osama bin Laden
Islamic Militant & Terrorist
Osama bin Laden
  • May 3 Thanasis Veggos, Greek actor (b. 1927)
  • May 3 Jackie Cooper, American actor, dies at 88
  • May 3 Sergo Kotrikadze, Georgian footballer (b. 1936)
  • May 5 Yosef Merimovich, Israeli football player and manager (b. 1924)
  • May 5 Claude Choules, last surviving World War I veteran (b. 1901)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

May 7 Seve Ballesteros, Spanish golfer, dies of brain cancer at 54

Golfer and Five-Time Major Championship Winner Seve Ballesteros
Golfer and Five-Time Major Championship Winner
Seve Ballesteros
  • May 7 Allyson Hennessy, Trindadian television presenter
  • May 7 Big George, British broadcaster, composer, bandleader and musician (b. 1957)
  • May 8 Lionel Rose, Australian boxer (b. 1948)
  • May 9 Wouter Weylandt, Belgian cyclist (b. 1984)
  • May 10 Michael Baze, American horse racing jockey (b. 1987)
  • May 11 Klaus Schlesinger, German writer, dies at 64
  • May 13 Derek Boogaard, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1982)
  • May 13 Bruce Ricker, American jazz and blues documentarian (b. 1942)
  • May 15 Bob Flannigan, American jazz singer (The Four Freshmen), dies at 84
  • May 16 Bob Davis, Australian rules footballer (b. 1928)
  • May 16 Bill Skiles, American comic (b. 1931)
  • May 16 Edward Hardwicke, English actor (b. 1932)
  • May 17 Harmon Killebrew, American baseball player (b. 1936)
  • May 19 Garret FitzGerald, Irish politician and former Taoiseach (b. 1926)
  • May 20 Randy Savage, American Pro-Wrestler (b. 1952)
  • May 24 Huguette Clark, Heiress of the Clark Copper fortune, life-long reclusion from society. (b. 1906)
  • May 25 Terry Jenner, Australian cricketer (b. 1944)
  • May 25 Leonora Carrington, British-Mexican Surrealist artist dies aged 94
  • May 26 Arisen Ahubudu, Sri Lankan scholar, author and playwright (b. 1920)
  • May 26 Ben Roberts, British industrial relations expert (London School of Economics), dies at 93
  • May 27 Jeff Conaway, American actor (b. 1950)
  • May 27 Margo Dydek, Polish basketball player (b. 1974)
  • May 27 Gil Scott-Heron, American poet, musician and author (b. 1949)
  • May 29 Ferenc Mádl, Hungarian politician, President of Hungary (b. 1931)
  • May 29 Bill Clements, Governor of Texas (b. 1917)
  • May 29 Sergei Bagapsh, Abkhazian president (b. 1949)
  • May 30 Clarice Taylor, American actress (b. 1917)