On This Day

What Happened in March 1989

Historical Events

  • Mar 1 Charlie Francis, coach of disqualified sprinter Ben Johnson tells federal inquiry into Canada's greatest sports scandal Johnson knowingly used steroids since 1981; Johnson first across line Olympic 100m 1988
  • Mar 1 Comet du Toit at perihelion
  • Mar 1 The United States becomes a member of the Berne Convention copyright treaty
  • Mar 2 12 European nations agree to ban chlorofluorocarbon production by 2000
  • Mar 2 Tanker Exxon Houston runs aground in Hawaii, spills 117,000 gallons of oil

Music History

Mar 2 Madonna's "Like a Prayer" premieres on worldwide Pepsi commercial

Sports History

Mar 2 NY Mets stars Keith Hernandez and Darryl Strawberry famously nearly come to blows in front of reporters and TV crews at spring training

  • Mar 3 Machinists strike Eastern Airlines; pilots honor picket lines
  • Mar 3 Robert McFarlane gets $20,000 fine, 2 yrs probation for pleading guilty to whitholding information from Congress in Iran-Contra illegal arms-for-hostages affair
  • Mar 4 Eastern Airlines machinists strike
  • Mar 4 Javier Sotomayor high jumps indoor world record (2.43m)

Louvre Pyramid

Mar 4 The Louvre Pyramid designed by I. M. Pei is inaugurated by French President François Mitterrand in Paris

  • Mar 5 19th Easter Seal Telethon raises $37,002,000
  • Mar 5 Elly Verhulst runs world record 3000 m indoor (8:33.82)
  • Mar 6 Yanks beat Mets 6-4 in exhibition game (1st meeting since 1985)

Historic Event

Mar 7 Iran drops diplomatic relations with Britain over Salman Rushdie's book "Satanic Verses"

  • Mar 7 Partial eclipse of the Sun (Hawaii, NW North America, Greenland)

Sports History

Mar 7 Dino Ciccarelli is traded by the Minnesota North Stars to the Washington Capitals

  • Mar 8 "Heidi Chronicles" opens at Plymouth Theater NYC for 621 performances
  • Mar 8 Roger Kingdom runs indoor world record 60m hurdles (7.37 secs)
  • Mar 9 Eastern Airlines files for bankruptcy
  • Mar 9 Roger Kingdom runs world record 60m hurdles indoor (7.36 sec)

Historic Event

Mar 9 US Senate rejects President George H. W. Bush's nomination of John Tower as Defense Secretary

  • Mar 9 Soviet Union officially submits to jurisdiction of the World Court
  • Mar 9 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Film and TV Awards

Mar 12 15th People's Choice Awards: Dustin Hoffman & Meryl Streep win (Dramatic Motion Picture) and Bill Cosby & Phylicia Rashad win (TV)

  • Mar 12 2 cyanide-contaminated Chilean grapes found (Philadelphia)
  • Mar 12 Madagascar AREMA party wins parliamentary election
  • Mar 12 36th ACC Men's Basketball Tournament: #9 North Carolina beats #7 Duke, 77-74
  • Mar 12 30th SEC Men's Basketball Tournament: Alabama beats Florida, 72-60
  • Mar 12 10th Big East Men's Basketball Tournament: Georgetown beats Syracuse, 88-79

Historic Event

Mar 12 Computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee submits his first proposal for an "information management system" to his boss at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) who finds it “vague, but exciting”

  • Mar 13 27th shuttle, Discovery 8, launched, 1st woman to do the countdown
  • Mar 13 FDA orders recall of all Chilean fruit in US
  • Mar 13 US space shuttle STS-29 launched
  • Mar 15 "Les Miserables" opens at Royal Alexandra Theatre Toronto
  • Mar 15 US Department of Veterans Affairs officially established as a Cabinet position
  • Mar 15 NY Rangers retire goalie Eddie Giacomin's #1 uniform
  • Mar 17 "Chu Chem" opens at Ritz Theater NYC for 44 performances
  • Mar 17 Dorothy Cudahy is 1st female grand marshal of St. Patrick Day Parade
  • Mar 18 27th NASA Space Shuttle Mission: Discovery 8 (STS-29), returns to Earth
  • Mar 18 California Quake amusement ride opens at Universal Studios
  • Mar 18 Dino Ciccarelli sets Washington Capital record of 7 pts in a game
  • Mar 18 In Egypt, a 4,400-year-old mummy is found in the Pyramid of Cheops
  • Mar 19 Boeing V-22 Osprey VTOL aircraft makes maiden flight
  • Mar 19 Ice Dance Championship at Paris won by M Klimova & S Ponomarenko (USSR)
  • Mar 19 Ice Pairs World Championship at Paris won by Ekaterina Gordeeva & Sergei Grinkov (USSR)

Sports History

Mar 19 Men's Figure Skating Championship in Paris won by Kurt Browning (CAN)

  • Mar 19 Worlds Ladies' Figure Skating Champ in Paris won by Midori Ito (Japan)

PGA Players Championship

Mar 19 PGA Players Championship, TPC at Sawgrass: Tom Kite wins the title in gusty conditions, 1 stroke ahead of runner-up Chip Beck

  • Mar 19 Wales beats England, 12-9 at Cardiff Arms Park to allow France to claim it's 9th outright Five Nations Rugby Championship

Sports History

Mar 20 Baseball announces Reds manager Pete Rose is under investigation

  • Mar 20 Richard J Kerr replaces Robert M Gates as deputy director of CIA
  • Mar 21 1st sea test of Trident 2 missile self-destructs, Cape Canaveral, Florida

Sports History

Mar 22 Pete Rozelle announces retirement as NFL commissioner after 29 years

  • Mar 22 US Supreme Court upholds 1 person 1 vote rule of NYC Board of Estimate
  • Mar 22 Clint Malarchuk of the Buffalo Sabres suffers a near-fatal injury when another player accidentally slits his throat.
  • Mar 23 2 Utah scientists claim they have produced fusion at room temperature
  • Mar 23 Joel Steinberg sentenced to 25 yrs for killing his adopted daughter

Film & TV History

Mar 24 NBC rebroadcasts Mary Martin and Cyril Ritchard's 1960 version of "Peter Pan" for the first time since 1973

  • Mar 24 Exxon tanker Valdez spills 10.8 million gallons of crude oil in Prince William Sound, near Tatitlek, Alaska
  • Mar 25 "Les Miserables" opens at Auditorium Theatre, Chicago
  • Mar 27 1st African American soap opera, "Generations" premieres on NBC-TV
  • Mar 27 Delhi beat Bengal by innings & 210 to win Cricket's Ranji Trophy
  • Mar 28 New Zealand wins America's Cup over Stars & Stripes, in a NY court
  • Mar 29 1st Soviet hockey players are permitted to play for the NHL
  • Mar 29 1st US private commercial rocket makes suborbital test flight at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico
  • Mar 29 61st Academy Awards: "Rain Man" - Best Picture, Actor (Dustin Hoffman), Director (Barry Levinson) and Screenwriting; and Jodie Foster win
  • Mar 29 9th Golden Raspberry Awards: "Cocktail" wins

Historic Event

Mar 29 I. M. Pei's pyramidal entrance to the Louvre opens in Paris

  • Mar 29 Michael Milken, junk bond king, indicted in NY for racketeering

Historic Event

Mar 31 Donald Trump purchases Eastern's Northeast Shuttle


Famous Birthdays

  • Mar 1 Sonya Kitchell, American contemporary folk singer-songwriter ("Can't Get You Out Of My Mind"), born in Northampton, Massachusetts
  • Mar 1 Carlos Vela, Mexican soccer winger (72 caps; Real Sociedad, Los Angeles FC), born in Cancún, Quintana Roo, Mexico
  • Mar 2 Chris Woakes, English cricket all-rounder (HS 137, BB 6/17; Warwickshire CCC), born in Birmingham, England
  • Mar 3 Erica Morningstar, Canadian Swimmer, and record holder.
  • Mar 5 Jake Lloyd, American actor (The Phantom Menace), born in Fort Collins, Colorado
  • Mar 6 Agnieszka Radwańska, Polish tennis player (WTA Finals champion 2015), born in Kraków, Poland
  • Mar 7 Gerald Anderson, Filipino actor and model (Maalaala Mo Kaya), born in Subic, Philippines
  • Mar 8 Ming Xi, Chinese model, born in Shanghai, China
  • Mar 11 Anton Yelchin, Russian-born American actor (Star Trek), born in Leningrad, Soviet Union (d. 2016)
  • Mar 13 Peaches Geldof, English columnist and daughter of Bob Geldof and Paula Yates, born in London (d. 2014)
  • Mar 13 P. K. Subban, Canadian ice hockey player (New Jersey Devils), born in Toronto, Ontario
  • Mar 14 Colby O'Donis [Colón] American singer (Lady Gaga -"Just Dance"), songwriter, and record producer, born in Queens, New York
  • Mar 15 Caitlin Wachs, actress (Chloe Waters-Profiler)
  • Mar 15 Margaret Nales Wilson, Filipino model, born in Bacolod City, Philippines
  • Mar 16 Theo Walcott, English football player (Arsenal, English national team), born in Stanmore, England
  • Mar 16 Blake Griffin, American NBA forward (LA Clippers, Detroit Pistons), born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
  • Mar 17 Shinji Kagawa, Japanese footballer (Borussia Dortmund), born in Kobe, Japan
  • Mar 18 Lily Collins, British American actress (Mirror, Mirror), born in Guildford, England
  • Mar 20 Tamim Iqbal, Bangladeshi cricketer
  • Mar 21 Rochelle Humes, British pop singer (The Saturdays - "What About Us"), born in Barking, England

J. J. Watt

Mar 22 J. J. Watt [Justin James], American NFL player (Houston Texans), born in Waukesha, Wisconsin

  • Mar 24 Zyzz [Aziz Shavershian], Kurdish-Russian-Australian bodybuilder and model, born in Moscow, USSR (d. 2011)
  • Mar 25 Chicken Kentucky, 1st partial birth in space (chicken)
  • Mar 25 Alyson Michalka, American actress/singer
  • Mar 25 Scott Sinclair, English footballer
  • Mar 26 Von Miller, American NFL outside linebacker (Denver Broncos), born in Dallas, Texas
  • Mar 26 Simon Kjær, Danish footballer (AC Milan), born in Horsens, Denmark
  • Mar 28 Marek Suchý, Czech footballer
  • Mar 28 Mira Leung, Canadian figure skater
  • Mar 28 Afrikan Boy [Olushola Ajose], British rapper (Wot It Do?), born in Nigeria
  • Mar 28 Lukas Jutkiewicz, English footballer

Famous Weddings

Kevin Kline

Mar 4 Actress Phoebe Cates marries fellow actor Kevin Kline

William Hurt

Mar 5 Actor William Hurt marries second wife Heidi Henderson (divorced 1993)


Famous Divorces

David Hasselhoff

Mar 1 "Baywatch" actor David Hasselhoff (37) divorces actress Catherine Hickland (33) after nearly 5 years of marriage


Famous Deaths

  • Mar 1 Henk van Stipriaan, Dutch journalist & VARA radio host, dies at 64
  • Mar 1 Josephine van Gasteren, Dutch actress & director (Bluejackets, De kleine zielen), dies at 71
  • Mar 4 Lloyd "Tiny" Grimes, American jazz and R&B guitarist (Art Tatum), dies of meningitis at 72
  • Mar 6 Harry Andrews, English actor (Equus, Helen of Troy, Hill), dies at 77
  • Mar 8 Stuart Hamblen, American singer and composer (This Ole House), dies at 80
  • Mar 9 Robert Mapplethorpe, American photographer, dies at 42
  • Mar 10 Doc Green, American singer (The Drifters), dies at 54
  • Mar 11 Johan Fleerackers, Flemish linguist, dies at 57
  • Mar 11 William Challee, American stage and screen actor (Desperate; Five Easy Pieces; Moonchild), dies at 84
  • Mar 11 James Kee, American politician (b. 1917)
  • Mar 11 John J. McCloy, United States Secretary of War (b. 1895)
  • Mar 12 Maurice Evans, British actor (Planet of the Apes, Bewitched), dies at 87
  • Mar 14 Edward Abbey American environmental author (The Monkey Wrench Gang), dies after surgery at 62
  • Mar 14 Zita of Bourbon-Parma, Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary, dies at 96
  • Mar 15 Muhammad Jameel Didi, Maldivian poet (b. 1915)
  • Mar 17 Merritt Butrick, American actor (Shy People, Square Pegs), dies of AIDS at 29
  • Mar 17 Marek Bliziński, Polish jazz guitarist and composer, dies of skin cancer at 41
  • Mar 18 Piet Kruiver, Dutch soccer player, dies at 51
  • Mar 18 Harold Jeffreys, English mathematician (Theory of Probability) and geophysicist, dies at 97
  • Mar 19 Alan Civil, British horn player (played solo on Beatles "For No One"), dies of liver and kidney failure at 59
  • Mar 20 Alan Gifford [John Lennox], American actor (Time Lock, 2001: A Space Odyssey), dies at 78
  • Mar 20 Archie Bleyer, American orchestra leader (Arthur Godfrey), dies at 79
  • Mar 21 Milton Frome, actor (Family Jewels), dies
  • Mar 24 Arnett Cobb, American jazz tenor saxophonist (Lionel Hampton), dies at 70
  • Mar 27 May Allison, actress (Youth for Salem Men of Steel), dies
  • Mar 29 Bernard Blier, French character actor (Les Miserables; Women & War), dies at 73
  • Mar 31 Bill Chappell Jr., American politician (Rep-D-FL, 1969-89), dies at 67