On This Day

What Happened in April 2003

Historical Events

  • Apr 2 At 27 years, 249 days Texas Rangers infielder Alex Rodriguez becomes the youngest MLB player to hit 300 home runs; homers off Ramon Ortiz in 5th inning of an 11-5 loss to the Angels in Anaheim
  • Apr 5 18th Soap Opera Digest Awards - General Hospital wins
  • Apr 5 156th Grand National: 10-year-old 16/1 shot Monty's Pass, ridden by Barry Geraghty wins by 12 lengths from 2001 Welsh National winner Supreme Glory
  • Apr 5 The Kansas City Royals become the first MLB team to begin the season 5-0 after losing 100 games the previous year, beating the Cleveland Indians, 2 - 1

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 7 U.S. troops capture Baghdad; Saddam Hussein's regime falls two days later.

Iraqi President and Dictator Saddam Hussein
Iraqi President and Dictator
Saddam Hussein

Music awardsMusic Awards

Apr 7 37th CMT Flameworthy Video Music Awards: Toby Keith & Martina McBride win

Country Singer-Songwriter Martina McBride
Country Singer-Songwriter
Martina McBride
Country Singer and Actor Toby Keith
Country Singer and Actor
Toby Keith
  • Apr 7 65th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: Syracuse beats Kansas, 81-78; Orangemen win first title; Carmelo Anthony named tournament Most Outstanding Player
  • Apr 8 22nd NCAA Women's Basketball Championship: Connecticut beats Tennessee, 73-68; UConn guard Diana Taurasi is named Most Outstanding Player

IraqInvasion of Iraq

Apr 9 Baghdad falls to U.S. forces, ending the invasion of Iraq, but resulting in widespread looting

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US troops in a sandstorm during the invasion of Iraq in 2003
US troops in a sandstorm during the invasion of Iraq in 2003
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  • Apr 13 67th US Masters Tournament, Augusta National GC: Mike Weir wins his only major title in a 1-hole playoff over Len Mattiace; only Canadian to win a major and first left-handed Masters champion
  • Apr 13 49th British Academy Television Awards: "Alistair McGowan's Big Impression" Best Comedy, "Spooks" Best Drama
  • Apr 14 The Human Genome Project is completed with 99% of the human genome sequenced to an accuracy of 99.99%
  • Apr 14 U.S. troops in Baghdad capture Abu Abbas, leader of the Palestinian group that killed an American on the hijacked cruise liner the Achille Lauro in 1985
  • Apr 16 Treaty of Accession is signed in Athens admitting 10 new member states to the European Union

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 16 Washington Wizards' Michael Jordan plays his final NBA game, in Philadelphia, where he receives a 3 minute standing ovation.

Basketball Superstar Michael Jordan
Basketball Superstar
Michael Jordan

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 19 Nina Simone is awarded and honorary degree by the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia

Singer and Civil Rights Activist Nina Simone
Singer and Civil Rights Activist
Nina Simone
  • Apr 21 107th Boston Marathon: Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot of Kenya men's champion in 2:10:11; Svetlana Zakharova of Russia women's winner in 2:25:19

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 22 Patrick Roy plays his final career NHL game

NHL Goalie and Coach Patrick Roy
NHL Goalie and Coach
Patrick Roy

PandemicSARS Outbreak

Apr 23 Beijing closes all schools for two weeks because of the SARS virus

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The SARS virus, known technically as SARS-CoV (coronavirus). First appearing in China in 2002, the disease spread to 29 countries before it was stopped.
The SARS virus, known technically as SARS-CoV (coronavirus). First appearing in China in 2002, the disease spread to 29 countries before it was stopped.
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  • Apr 26 NFL Draft: USC quarterback Carson Palmer first pick by Cincinnati Bengals

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Apr 28 Andre Agassi recaptures the world no. 1 ranking to become the oldest top-ranked male in the history of the ATP rankings (33 years, 13 days)

Tennis Legend Andre Agassi
Tennis Legend
Andre Agassi

Famous Birthdays

  • Apr 3 Elsie Fisher, American actress (Eighth Grade), born in Riverside, California
  • Apr 29 Barbaro, American thoroughbred racehorse (d. 2007)
  • Apr 29 Maud Behn, Princess of Norway

Famous Weddings

LoveWedding of Interest

Apr 7 Academy Award "Gladiator" actor Russell Crowe (39) weds singer Danielle Spencer (32) at his 560-acre cattle farm in Nana Glen, New South Wales, Australia

  • Apr 12 Prince Laurent of Belgium (39) weds land surveyor Claire Coombs (29) in Brussels, Belgium
  • Apr 22 "Star Trek: Enterprise" actress Jolene Blalock (28) weds "Live Nation" CEO Michael Rapino in Negril, Jamaica
  • Apr 25 "Angel" actress Amy Acker (26) weds actor James Carpinello (27) at Hans Fahden Vineyard in Napa Valley, California

Famous Deaths

  • Apr 1 Leslie Cheung, Hong Kong actor, singer and composer (Farewell My Concubine), commits suicide at 46
  • Apr 2 (Charles) Edwin Starr [Hatcher], American soul and R&B singer ("War"), dies of a heart attack at 61
  • Apr 3 Homer Banks, American singer and songwriter ("Be What You Are"), dies at 61
  • Apr 3 Michael Kelly, American journalist (b. 1957)
  • Apr 4 Anthony Caruso, American actor (b. 1916)
  • Apr 4 Resortes, Mexican comedian (b. 1916)
  • Apr 5 Arthur Knight, CEO (Courtaulds), dies at 86
  • Apr 6 David Bloom, American reporter (b. 1963)
  • Apr 6 Babatunde Olatunji, Nigerian percussionist (Drums of Passion), educator, and social activist, dies at 75
  • Apr 6 Gerald Emmett Cardinal Carter, Canadian religious figure (b. 1912)
  • Apr 7 Cecile de Brunhoff, French storyteller (b. 1903)
  • Apr 7 David Greene, British television director (b. 1921)

Person of interestLittle Eva

Apr 10 Little Eva [Boyd], American pop singer (Locomotion), dies of cervical cancer at 59

Pop Singer Little Eva
Pop Singer
Little Eva
  • Apr 11 Cecil Howard Green, British geophysicist and businessman (b. 1900)
  • Apr 12 Cecil H. Green, American manufacturer (b. 1900)
  • Apr 15 Erin Fleming, Canadian actress, dies at 61
  • Apr 15 Reg Bundy, British performer, dies at 56
  • Apr 15 Leonard Tose, American trucking magnate & owner of NFL Philadelphia Eagles 1969-85, dies at 88
  • Apr 16 Graham Jarvis, Canadian actor (Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman - "Charlie"; Misery; 7th Heaven), dies of multiple myeloma at 72
  • Apr 16 Graham Stuart Thomas, English author and garden designer (b. 1909)
  • Apr 17 Robert Atkins, American dietician (b. 1930)
  • Apr 17 John Paul Getty Jr., American-born British oil magnate and billionaire (Getty Oil), dies of a chest infection at 70
  • Apr 17 Earl King, American R&B and blues guitarists, singer, and songwriter ("Come On"; "Big Chief"), dies from diabetes-related complications at 69
  • Apr 17 Yiannis Latsis, Greek shipping tycoon, dies at 92
  • Apr 18 Edgar F. Codd, English-American computer scientist who contributed to the theory and practice of database management systems, dies at 79 [1]
  • Apr 19 Conrad Leonard, British composer and pianist, dies at 104
  • Apr 20 Ruth Hale, American playwright and actress (b. 1908)
  • Apr 20 Daijiro Kato, Japanese motorcycle racer (b. 1976)
  • Apr 20 Bernard Katz, German-born Australian biophysicist (Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1970), dies at 82

Person of interestNina Simone

Apr 21 Nina Simone [Eunice Waymon], American jazz pianist, singer, songwriter, arranger, and civil rights activist (“Mississippi Goddam”; “To Be Young, Gifted, and Black”, “Feeling Good”; “Wild Is The Wind”), dies of breast cancer at 70

Singer and Civil Rights Activist Nina Simone
Singer and Civil Rights Activist
Nina Simone
  • Apr 22 Martha Griffiths, U.S. Congresswoman, dies at 91
  • Apr 22 Michael Larrabee, American athlete (Olympic gold 400m, 4x400m relay 1964), dies from pancreatic cancer at 69
  • Apr 22 Felice Bryant, American songwriter (Bye Bye Love; Wake Up Little Susie), dies at 77
  • Apr 23 James H. Critchfield, American C.I.A. officer, dies at 86
  • Apr 23 Fernand Fonssagrives, French photographer, dies at 92
  • Apr 25 Samson Kitur, Kenyan athlete (b. 1966)
  • Apr 26 Rosemary Brown, Canadian politician, dies at 85
  • Apr 26 Max Nicholson, Irish environmentalist, dies at 98
  • Apr 26 Peter Stone, American writer, dies at 73
  • Apr 27 Piet Roozenburg, Dutch World champion checker player (1948, 51, 52, 55), dies at 78
  • Apr 30 Peter "Possum" Bourne, New Zealand race car driver, dies at 47
  • Apr 30 Mark Berger, University of Kentucky professor (b. 1955)