On This Day

What Happened in July 1985

Historical Events

  • Jul 2 Andrei Gromyko appointed president of USSR
  • Jul 2 European Space Agency launches Giotto (Halley's Comet Flyby)

Film & TV History

Jul 3 CBS announces a 21% stock buy-back to thwart Ted Turner's takeover

  • Jul 3 Tinker Bell's first nightly flight at Walt Disney World Resort, Florida

Film Release

Jul 3 "Back to the Future" directed by Robert Zemeckis and starring Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd is released

Election of Interest

Jul 5 Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) party wins re-election in Zimbabwe for a second term

  • Jul 5 Nicholas Mark Sanders (England) begins circumnavigation of globe, covering 13,035 road miles in 78 days, 3 hr, 30 min

Wimbledon Women's Tennis

Jul 6 Wimbledon Women's Tennis: Martina Navratilova beats Chris Evert 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 for her 6th Wimbledon singles title

  • Jul 6 Mom's Command wins the Coaching Club American Oaks at Belmont to clinch American thoroughbred racing's Triple Tiara for fillies

Wimbledon Men's Tennis

Jul 7 Wimbledon Men's Tennis: Boris Becker beats South African Kevin Curren 6-3, 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 to become the youngest man (17) to win a Wimbledon singles title

  • Jul 8 Marge Schott becomes CEO of Cincinnati Red
  • Jul 9 South Africa police arrested Dutch ANC'er Klaas de Jong
  • Jul 10 Coca-Cola Co announces it will resume selling old formula Coke

The Sinking of the Rainbow Warrior

Jul 10 French foreign intelligence agents blow up the Greenpeace boat Rainbow Warrior in Auckland harbor, New Zealand to prevent it interfering with French nuclear tests in the South Pacific. Dutch photographer Fernando Pereira is killed.

Historic Publication

Jul 10 Playboy (and also Penthouse) publish nude pictures of Madonna

Sports History

Jul 11 Astros' Nolan Ryan, 1st to strike out 4000 (Mets' Danny Heep)

  • Jul 11 Refurbished space shuttle Columbia moves overland from Palmdale to Dryden
  • Jul 11 USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Jul 12 "Singin' in the Rain", musical adaptation of the 1952 film, opens at Gershwin Theater, NYC; runs for 367 performances

Historic Event

Jul 12 Doctors discover a cancerous growth in President Reagan's colon

  • Jul 12 STS 51-F launch scrubbed at T -3s because of main engine shutdown
  • Jul 13 "Live Aid" concerts held at both Wembley Stadium (London) and John F. Kennedy Stadium (Philadelphia) raises over $70 million for African famine relief

Sports History

Jul 13 New York Yankees retire Roger Maris (9) and Elston Howard (32) uniforms

  • Jul 14 US Open Women's Golf, Baltusrol GC: Kathy Baker (later Guadagnino) wins her first LPGA Tour event and only major title, 3 strokes ahead of runner-up Judy Clark (later Dickinson)
  • Jul 14 Columbia returns to Kennedy Space Center via Offutt AFB, Neb
  • Jul 14 Last USFL game-Baltimore Stars defeats Oakland Invaders, 28-24
  • Jul 15 Deborah Carthy-Deu, of Puerto Rico, crowned 34th Miss Universe
  • Jul 16 56th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 6-1 at Humphrey Metrodome, Minn
  • Jul 16 All star MVP: LaMarr Hoyt (San Diego Padres)
  • Jul 16 Bill to abolish Greater London Council receives royal assent
  • Jul 18 USSR performs underground nuclear Test
  • Jul 19 Christa McAuliffe chosen as 1st school teacher to fly aboard the space shuttle
  • Jul 19 The Val di Stava Dam collapse killing 268 people in Val di Stava, Italy.
  • Jul 20 Divers find wreck of Spanish galleon Atocha
  • Jul 20 The government of Aruba passes legislation to secede from the Netherlands Antilles
  • Jul 21 "Leader of the Pack" closes at Ambassador Theater NYC after 120 performances

British Golf Open

Jul 21 British Open Men's Golf, Royal St George's GC: Scotsman Sandy Lyle wins his only Open title by 1 stroke from runner-up Payne Stewart; last time event features double cut (after 36 and 54 holes), introduced in 1968

  • Jul 21 Amina Fakir (Detroit), 23, crowned 18th Miss Black America
  • Jul 21 72nd Tour de France won by Bernard Hinault of France

Historic Event

Jul 24 Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi signs a peace accord with Sikh leader Harchand Singh Longowai to settle the three-year Punjab crisis [1]

  • Jul 24 French DGSE officers Dominique Prieur and Alain Mafart are arrested and charged with murder over the bombing of the Rainbow Warrior

Film & TV History

Jul 25 Spokeswoman for Rock Hudson confirms he has AIDS

  • Jul 25 Steve Cram runs world record mile (3:46.32)
  • Jul 25 US performs nuclear Test at Nevada Test Site
  • Jul 25 USSR performs nuclear Test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR
  • Jul 25 Uganda suspends constitution following coup
  • Jul 27 Ingrid Kristiansen of Norway becomes first woman to run 10,000m in under 31 minutes; takes world record down to 30:59.42 in Oslo, Norway

Golf Major

Jul 28 Canadian Open Women's Golf (du Maurier Classic), Beaconsfield GC: Pat Bradley wins by 1 from Jane Geddes

  • Jul 28 Alan Garcia sworn in as President of Peru
  • Jul 28 L Brock, Enos Slaughter, A Vaughan, & H Wilhelm inducted into Baseball Hall of Fame
  • Jul 29 19th NASA Space Shuttle Mission (51-G): Challenger 8 launches
  • Jul 30 Discovery moves to Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center (Florida) for mating of STS 51-I mission
  • Jul 30 Valerie Lowrance, of Texas, 18, crowned America's Junior Miss

Historic Publication

Jul 31 Indian writer R.K. Narayan publishes his short story collection "Under the Banyan Tree and Other Stories"


Famous Birthdays

  • Jul 1 Chris Perez, American MLB reliever (All Star 2011-12), born in Bradenton, Florida
  • Jul 1 Lea Seydoux, French actress (Blue Is the Warmest Colour, Spectre), born in Paris, France
  • Jul 2 Rhett Bomar, American football player
  • Jul 2 Chad Henne, American football player

Ashley Tisdale

Jul 2 Ashley Tisdale, American actress and singer (High School Musical), born in Monmouth County, New Jersey

  • Jul 2 Vincenzo Maltempo, Italian classical pianist (works of Charles-Valentin Alkan), and teacher, born in Benevento, Italy
  • Jul 3 Minami Keisuke, Japanese singer and actor, born in Yokohama, Japan
  • Jul 5 Stephanie McIntosh, Australian pop singer and actress, born in Malvern, Australia
  • Jul 5 Nick O'Malley, British indie rock musician (Arctic Monkeys), born in Sheffield, England

Megan Rapinoe

Jul 5 Megan Rapinoe, American pro soccer player (American co-captain), born in Redding, California

  • Jul 6 Ranveer Singh, Bollywood actor (Bajirao Mastani), born in Mumbai, India
  • Jul 8 Jamie Cook, British guitarist (Arctic Monkeys - "I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor"), born in High Green, Sheffield, England
  • Jul 9 Paweł Korzeniowski, Polish swimmer
  • Jul 9 Ashley Young, English footballer
  • Jul 9 BJ Watling, New Zealand cricket wicketkeeper (79 Tests, 8 x 100s, 275 dismissals, TS 205; Northern Districts, Durham CCC, Lancashire CCC), born in Durban, Natal Province, South Africa
  • Jul 10 Mario Gómez, German footballer
  • Jul 11 Aki Maeda, Japanese actress
  • Jul 12 Luiz Ejlli, Albanian pop singer (Eurovison, 2006), born in Shkodra, Albania
  • Jul 12 Natasha Poly, Russian supermodel
  • Jul 13 Guillermo Ochoa, Mexican footballer
  • Jul 14 Lee Kwang-soo, South Korean actor (Inseparable Bros ), born in Namyangju, South Korea
  • Jul 17 Neil McGregor, Scottish footballer, born in Irvine, United Kingdom
  • Jul 17 Tom Fletcher, British pop singer, and guitarist (McFly - "5 Colours In Her Hair"; "All About You"), born in Harrow, London, England
  • Jul 18 Chace Crawford, American actor
  • Jul 18 Theo Croker, American jazz trumpeter, composer, producer and vocalist, born in Leesburg, Florida
  • Jul 20 John Francis Daley, American actor
  • Jul 21 Von Wafer, American basketball player, born in Homer, Louisiana
  • Jul 22 Takudzwa Ngwenya, Zimbabwean-American rugby player
  • Jul 22 Akira Tozawa, Japanese professional wrestler
  • Jul 23 Luis Ángel Landín, Mexican footballer, born in Zamora, Mexico
  • Jul 23 Matthew Murphy, English musician (The Wombats), born in Liverpool, England
  • Jul 24 Patrice Bergeron, Canadian hockey player
  • Jul 24 Xenia Rubinos, American jazz-funk-rock singer-songwriter, born in Hartford, Connecticut
  • Jul 25 Shantel VanSanten, American model and actress (For All Mankind), born in Luverne, Minnesota
  • Jul 25 James Lafferty, American actor (One Tree Hill-Nathan Scott), born in Hemet, California
  • Jul 25 Jasmine Lennard, British model and reality TV star (Big Brother), born in Belgravia, Westminster, England
  • Jul 25 Nelson Piquet Jr., Brazilian auto racer (Formula E champion 2014-15), born in Heidelberg, West Germany
  • Jul 26 Gaël Clichy, French footballer (İstanbul Başakşehir), born in Toulouse, France
  • Jul 26 Audrey De Montigny, Quebec singer, born in Sainte-Julienne, Quebec
  • Jul 27 Benedita Pereira, Portuguese actress, born in Porto, Portugal
  • Jul 27 Lou Taylor Pucci, American actor (Thumbsucker), born in Seaside Heights, New Jersey
  • Jul 28 Dustin Milligan, Canadian actor, born in Yellowknife, Canada
  • Jul 28 Tynisha Keli, American singer, born in New Bedford, Massachusetts
  • Jul 30 Daniel Fredheim Holm, Norwegian footballer, born in Oslo, Norway

Famous Weddings

Isiah Thomas

Jul 19 NBA player Isiah Thomas (24) weds Lynn Kendall in Chicago

Robin Gibb

Jul 31 Bee Gees member Robin Gibb (35) weds author and artist Dwina Murphy


Famous Deaths

  • Jul 1 Pauli Murray, African American poet and civil rights activist, dies at 74
  • Jul 2 David Purley, British Formula 1 driver (b. 1945)
  • Jul 3 Frank Selke, Canadian ice hockey manager, dies at 92
  • Jul 3 Cooney Weiland, Canadian NHL forward (Boston Bruins), dies at 80
  • Jul 4 John de Quay, Dutch premier (1959-63), dies at 83
  • Jul 5 Gerard Schmook, Flemish literature historian/custodian, dies at 86
  • Jul 5 Jack Robertson, South African cricket spinner (3 Tests v Aust 1935-36), dies
  • Jul 5 Marion Byron, actress (Steamboat Bill Jr), dies at 73
  • Jul 7 Patti McCarty, actress (Gangster of the Frontier), dies at 64
  • Jul 8 Gardner Cowles Jr, US publisher (Look Magazine), dies at 82
  • Jul 8 Phil Foster, American comedian (Frank De Fazio-Laverne & Shirley), dies at 72
  • Jul 8 Simon Kuznets, American economist (Nobel 1971), dies at 84
  • Jul 9 Rafael Campos, Dominican born actor (Ramon-Rhoda, Sancho-V), dies of cancer at 49
  • Jul 9 Charlotte, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg (b. 1896)
  • Jul 9 Jimmy Kinnon, Scottish founder of Narcotics Anonymous (b. 1911)
  • Jul 10 Fernando Pereira, military activist, murdered
  • Jul 16 Wayne King, American saxophonist and bandleader, known as the Waltz King ("The Waltz You Saved for Me"), dies at 84
  • Jul 16 Heinrich Böll, German writer, Nobel laureate (b. 1917)
  • Jul 16 Robert Siohan, French conductor and composer, dies at 91
  • Jul 17 Czesław Marek, Polish composer, dies at 93
  • Jul 17 Margo, actress (Rumba, Viva Zapata), dies at 68 of a brain tumor
  • Jul 18 Shahnawaz Bhutto, son of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto
  • Jul 18 Robert Raglan, British character actor (Dad's Army - " Colonel Pritchard"), dies at 76
  • Jul 19 Janusz A. Zajdel, Polish sci-fi author (The Whole Truth about Planet Xi), dies at 47
  • Jul 20 Bruno de Finetti, Italian probabilist statistician and actuary, dies at 79
  • Jul 21 Mickey Shaughnessy, actor (Chicago Teddy Bears), dies at 65
  • Jul 21 Vicki Vola, actress (Miss Miller-Mr District Attorney)
  • Jul 23 Kay Kyser, bandleader (Kay Kyser's Kollege), dies at 79
  • Jul 23 Johnny Wardle, English cricketer (b. 1923)
  • Jul 27 'Smoky' Joe Wood, American baseball pitcher/outfielder (World Series 1912, 15, 20; MLB wins leader 34–5 1912; pitched no-hitter 1911; Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians), dies at 95
  • Jul 28 Grant Williams, American actor (Hawaiian Eye, Incredible Shrinking Man), dies of toxic poisoning at 54
  • Jul 29 James F Nolan, actor (Dante), dies of cancer at 69
  • Jul 30 Julia Hall Bowman Robinson, American mathematician (b. 1919)
  • Jul 30 Peter Knight, English musical arranger, conductor, and composer, dies at 68
  • Jul 31 Eugene Carson Blake, US Secretary-General of World Council of Churches (1966-72), dies at 78
  • Jul 31 Murray Chapple, New Zealand cricketer (NZ Test batsman through the 1950's), dies at 55