On This Day

What Happened in December 2019

Historical Events

  • Dec 1 Iraqi parliament approves resignation of Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi after weeks of unrest and 400 deaths
  • Dec 1 A newly developed apple that can last a year - the Cosmic Crisp goes on sale in Washington State, US

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 1 British Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton wins season-ending Abu Dhabi GP to claim his 6th F1 World Drivers C'ship by 87 points from team mate Valtteri Bottas; Mercedes' 6th straight Constructors title

Formula 1 Driver Lewis Hamilton
Formula 1 Driver
Lewis Hamilton

Historic DiscoveryCOVID-19

Dec 1 Earliest traceable patient, a 55-year-old man, develops symptoms of a novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in Wuhan, China
Learn More >>

Burial of a coronavirus victim in Iran during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic
Burial of a coronavirus victim in Iran during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic
  • Dec 2 Steve Bullock and Joe Sestak drop out of the US Presidential race

Sport awardFootball Awards

Dec 2 FIFA Ballon d'Or: Barcelona forward Lionel Messi wins his record 6th award from Liverpool's Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk; American midfielder Megan Rapinoe is Women's World Player of the Year

Football Star Lionel Messi
Football Star
Lionel Messi
Soccer Star Megan Rapinoe
Soccer Star
Megan Rapinoe
  • Dec 2 Hawaiian Carissa Moore earns her 4th World Surf League Women’s Championship Tour title with a third placing at the season-ending Maui Pro event at Honolua Bay
  • Dec 3 Kamala Harris ends her US presidential campaign

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 Spotify say Drake the most streamed star of the 2010s with 28 billion streams, Ed Sheeran's "Shape Of You" most streamed track with 2.4 billion streams

Singer-Songwriter Drake
Singer-Songwriter
Drake
Singer-Songwriter Ed Sheeran
Singer-Songwriter
Ed Sheeran

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin announce they are stepping down from roles at parent company Alphabet, Sundar Pichai to become head of both

Computer Scientist, Google Co-founder Larry Page
Computer Scientist, Google Co-founder
Larry Page
Co-Founder of Google Sergey Brin
Co-Founder of Google
Sergey Brin
CEO of Alphabet and Google Sundar Pichai
CEO of Alphabet and Google
Sundar Pichai

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 70th anniversary of NATO marked by gathering in London of world leaders and reception by Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace

Queen of the United Kingdom Elizabeth II
Queen of the United Kingdom
Elizabeth II

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 World leaders discussing US President Donald Trump in unflattering terms at NATO reception caught on camera and goes viral

45th US President, Businessman and TV Personality Donald Trump
45th US President, Businessman and TV Personality
Donald Trump
  • Dec 4 58 migrants drown after a boat sinks off the coast of Mauritania, with 83 saved
  • Dec 4 North American migratory birds getting smaller, their wings wider due to climate change according to study by University of Michigan published in journal "Ecology Letters"
  • Dec 5 Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, announces articles of impeachment against US President Donald Trump will be drawn up for abuse of power
  • Dec 5 WHO says 142,000 people died of the measles around the world in 2018, nearly 20,000 more than in 2017

  • Dec 5 National strike in France; more than 800,000 people in 100 cities protest against proposed pension reform
  • Dec 6 Saudi state-owned oil company Saudi Aramco raises a record $25.6 billion in its first public share offering, makes it the world's most valuable company at $1.7 trillion
  • Dec 8 Fire in an illegal bag factory in Delhi, India, kills 43
  • Dec 8 Polar explorers Mike Horn and Børge Ousland complete 1,800 km (1,120 mile) journey on drifting ice in darkness in the Arctic
  • Dec 8 Vienna State Opera stages its first show by a female composer in 150 years - Olga Neuwirth’s opera, “Orlando”
  • Dec 8 South African Zozibini Tunzi crowned Miss Universe in Atlanta
  • Dec 9 World Anti-Doping Agency bans Russia from all major sporting events including 2020 Tokyo Olympics and 2022 football World Cup in Qatar for manipulating laboratory data
  • Dec 9 White Island / Whakaari volcano, a tourist attraction in New Zealand erupts killing 16
  • Dec 9 US officials "deliberately misled" the public on progress of the Afghanistan war, hid that it was a lost cause, according to The Washington Post analysis of the "Afghanistan Papers"
  • Dec 9 Chilean Air Force plane lost on flight to Antarctica with presumed loss of 38 lives
  • Dec 10 Sydney, Australia, blanketed in smoke from nearby bush fires pushing air quality to 11 times hazardous levels
  • Dec 10 1st fully electric commercial plane, a retro-fitted seaplane, completes test flight in Vancouver
  • Dec 10 Shooting at a New Jersey cemetery and a kosher supermarket leaves six dead, including the two shooters, in suspected anti-Semitic attack
  • Dec 10 Australian car maker Holden announces an end to Commodore production after 41 years
  • Dec 11 India passes controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill clearing way for citizenship for immigrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan but not if they are Muslim

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 11 Climate activist Greta Thunberg is named Time magazine's Person of the Year

Climate Activist Greta Thunberg
Climate Activist
Greta Thunberg
  • Dec 11 Bougainville votes to become independent of Papua New Guinea in a referendum
  • Dec 11 Discovery of the earliest figurative artwork in the world, (43,900 years old), figures part human part animal, from cave in Sulawesi, Indonesia, reported in journal "Nature"
  • Dec 11 Militants attack army base in Ates, Niger, killing at least 71. Islamic State claim responsibility.

Electoral defeatElection of Interest

Dec 12 British General Election won by Boris Johnson's Conservative Party in landslide win with 80 seat majority. Scottish National Party also wins 48 of 59 seats in Scotland.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson
British Prime Minister
Boris Johnson

  • Dec 12 Deepest point on land on earth identified under Denman Glacier, east Antarctica at 3.5km (11,500ft) below sea level
  • Dec 14 Miss World won by Miss Jamaica Toni-Ann Singh in London. First time all five major beauty titles held by black women.
  • Dec 14 Bel Air mansion featured in TV series "The Beverly Hillbillies" sells for $150 million, becoming California's most expensive property
  • Dec 14 85th Heisman Trophy Award: Joe Burrow, Louisiana State University (QB)
  • Dec 15 Presidents Cup Golf, Royal Melbourne GC: US wins 6 of the 12 final day singles with 4 tied to beat the International team, 16-14; 8th straight American victory
  • Dec 15 Longest ever UN climate talks end in Madrid with compromise deal on curbing carbon only, other targets deferred for a year
  • Dec 15 Raiders play their final NFL game in Oakland conceding 17 unanswered 2nd half points to go down 20-16 to the Jacksonville Jaguars; team to play out of Las Vegas in 2020
  • Dec 15 Protests against India's new citizenship bill that excludes Muslims, erupt across major cities, killing at least five

Music releaseMusic Single

Dec 16 Mariah Carey's single "All I Want For Christmas Is You" reaches No. 1, 25 years after release

Singer Mariah Carey
Singer
Mariah Carey

Sports record brokenNFL Record

Dec 16 Drew Brees breaks Peyton Manning's NFL record (539) for career touchdown passes as New Orleans Saints rout Indianapolis Colts, 34-7; Brees 29 of 30 for 307 yards & 4 TDs for record 96.7% pass completion

NFL Quarterback Drew Brees
NFL Quarterback
Drew Brees
  • Dec 17 Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf sentenced to death in absentia for high treason
  • Dec 17 Young girl's 5,700 year old DNA extracted from birch tar used as chewing gum, from Lolland Island, southern Denmark
  • Dec 17 England's Fallon Sherrock becomes first woman to win a match at the PDC World Darts Championship, beating compatriot Ted Evetts, 3-2 at the Alexandra Palace in London
  • Dec 17 Australia has its hottest day ever with average temperature of 40.9 across the country
  • Dec 17 China's 1st domestically built aircraft carrier, the Shandong, enters naval service
  • Dec 18 US House of Representatives votes to impeach President Donald Trump for abuse of power (230-197) and obstruction of Congress (229-198)
  • Dec 19 Australian state of New South Wales announces 7-day state of emergency amid extreme heat and over 100 bushfires that have burnt for two months
  • Dec 19 Earliest fossilized trees, 386 million years old, found at a quarry in Cairo, New York, study published in "Current Biology"
  • Dec 20 United States Space Force founded, an armed forces branch dedicated to space warfare
  • Dec 22 New Orleans wide receiver Michael Thomas sets NFL record for most catches in a season with his 144th as Saints beat Tennessee 38-28; breaks 17-year old record held by Marvin Harrison (143)
  • Dec 26 Annular solar eclipse visible from South and South East Asia
  • Dec 28 Jihadist fundamentalist group al-Shabaab sets off a truck bomb in Mogadishu, Somalia, killing at least 84 people and wounding over 150
  • Dec 28 49th Fiesta Bowl (College Football Playoff semifinal), #3 Clemson beats #2 Ohio State, 29-23
  • Dec 28 52nd Peach Bowl (College Football Playoff semi final): #1 LSU beats #4 Oklahoma, 63-28
  • Dec 30 86th Orange Bowl: #6 Florida beats #24 Virginia, 36-28
  • Dec 31 Iraqi militiamen and protesters breach the outer wall of the US embassy in Baghdad following US airstrikes against Kataib Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed Iraqi militia, on December 29

Famous Deaths

  • Dec 1 Shelley Morrison, American actress (General Hospital, Will & Grace), dies at 83
  • Dec 1 Pat Sullivan, American College Football Hall of Fame quarterback (Heisman Trophy 1971, Auburn University; NFL: Atlanta Falcons) and coach (TUC, Samford), dies from cancer at 69
  • Dec 2 Francesco Janich, Italian soccer defender (6 caps; Bologna), dies at 82
  • Dec 2 Fred Storey, Canadian curler (World C'ship gold 1966, 68, 69), dies at 87
  • Dec 4 Bob Willis, English cricket fast bowler and captain (90 Tests, 325 wickets; 64 ODIs), dies of prostate cancer at 70
  • Dec 4 Ockie Oosthuizen, South African rugby union front rower (9 caps; Transvaal), dies from cancer at 64
  • Dec 6 Jo Ann Washam, American golfer (Women's PGA C'ship 1975 3rd; 3 LPGA Tour titles), dies at 69
  • Dec 7 Chalmers "Bump" Elliott, American College Football Hall of Fame halfback and coach (U of Michigan) and college athletics administrator (Iowa), dies at 94
  • Dec 7 Denis Lalanne, French sports journalist ('Le grand combat du XV de France'; 'Rugbymania: French flair attitude'), dies at 93
  • Dec 7 Ron Saunders, English soccer striker (Portsmouth) and manager (Manchester City, Aston Villa, Birmingham City), dies at 87
  • Dec 8 Caroll Spinney, American puppeteer behind Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street (1969-2018), dies at 85
  • Dec 8 Juice Wrld [Jarad Higgins ], American rapper and singer-songwriter (All Girls Are the Same, Lucid Dreams), dies of a seizure at Chicago airport at 21

Person of interestPaul Volcker

Dec 8 Paul Volcker, American economist and Chairman of the US Federal Reserve (1979-87), dies at 92

Chairman of the Federal Reserve and Economist Paul Volcker
Chairman of the Federal Reserve and Economist
Paul Volcker
  • Dec 8 Rogério Pipi, Portuguese soccer forward (15 caps; Benfica), dies at 97
  • Dec 9 Marie Fredriksson, Swedish singer (Roxette - Must Have Been Love), dies after a long illness at 61
  • Dec 10 Jim Smith, English soccer midfielder and manager (Birmingham City, QPR, Portsmouth, Derby County), dies at 79
  • Dec 10 Jean Pagé, Canadian sports journalist (host: 'La Soirée du hockey' and '110%'), dies from prostate cancer at 73
  • Dec 11 David Bellamy, English botanist and TV presenter, dies at 86
  • Dec 12 Peter Snell, New Zealand athlete (Olympic gold 800m 1960, 64; 1,500m 1964), dies of heart failure at 81
  • Dec 12 Danny Aiello, American actor (Moonstruck, Do the Right Thing), dies at 86
  • Dec 12 Jorge Hernández, Cuban boxer Olympic gold light flyweight 1976; World C'ship gold 1974, 78), dies at 65
  • Dec 12 Vaughan Johnson, American NFL linebacker (Pro Bowl 1989-92; New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles), dies of kidney disease at 57
  • Dec 12 Brian Muller, New Zealand rugby union prop (14 caps; Taranaki), dies at 77
  • Dec 13 Carl Scheer, American basketball executive (general manager Denver Nuggets, LA Clippers, Charlotte Hornets; inventor NBA Slam Dunk Contest), dies from complications of dementia at 82
  • Dec 13 Yasuhiro Takai, Japanese baseball first baseman, designated hitter and broadcaster (NPB record 27 career pinch-hit home runs; Hankyu Braves), dies of kidney failure at 74
  • Dec 14 Anna Karina, Danish French 'New Wave' actress (Alphaville), dies at 79
  • Dec 14 Randy Colley (Moondog Rex), American pro wrestler (WWF Tag Team champion 1981), dies after undergoing amputation of his right leg at 69
  • Dec 16 Basil Butcher, West Indies cricket batsman (44 Tests; 3,104 runs @ 43.11), dies at 86
  • Dec 17 Hayden Fry, American College Football Hall of Fame coach (SMU 1962-72, North Texas State University 1973-78, University of Iowa 1979-98), dies from cancer at 90
  • Dec 17 Karin Balzer, German athlete (Olympic gold 80m hurdles 1964; bronze 100m hurdles 1972), dies at 81
  • Dec 19 Saoul Mamby, American boxer (WBC super lightweight title 1980-82), dies at 72
  • Dec 19 Shahdon Winchester, Trinidadian soccer winger (27 caps; Murciélagos), dies in a traffic collision at 27
  • Dec 20 Roland Matthes, German swimmer (Olympic gold 100, 200m backstroke 1968, 72; WR x 19), dies at 69
  • Dec 20 Junior Johnson, American auto racer and team owner (Daytona 500 1960; NASCAR Hall of Fame), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 88
  • Dec 20 Frank Foster, English rugby league lock (1 Test GB; Workington Town, Hull Kingston Rovers, Bradford Northern) and coach (Barrow, Whitehaven), dies at 79
  • Dec 20 Eduard Krieger, Austrian soccer defensive midfielder (25 caps; Austria Wien, Club Brugge K.V., LASK Linz), dies at 73
  • Dec 20 Yuri Pshenichnikov, Soviet soccer goalkeeper and coach (19 caps; FC Pakhtakor Tashkent, CSKA Moscow), dies at 79
  • Dec 21 Martin Peters, English soccer midfielder (67 caps; West Ham United, Tottenham Hotspur, Norwich City), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 76
  • Dec 21 Sam Strahan, New Zealand rugby union lock (17 caps; Manawatū), dies at 74
  • Dec 22 Fritz Künzli, Swiss soccer striker (44 caps; FC Zürich, FC Winterthur, FC Lausanne-Sport), dies from Alzheimer's disease at 73
  • Dec 23 Alan Harrington, Welsh soccer defender (11 caps; Cardiff City 348 games), dies at 86
  • Dec 23 Duncan MacKay, Scottish soccer defender (14 caps; Celtic 162 games), dies at 82
  • Dec 24 Walter Horak, Austrian soccer striker (13 caps; Wiener Sport Club, Sochaux), dies at 88
  • Dec 26 Elbert Dubenion, American football wide receiver and running back (AFL All Star 1964; Buffalo Bills), dies from complications related to Parkinson's disease at 86
  • Dec 26 Eigil Nielsen, Danish soccer midfielder (10 caps; Basel), dies at 71
  • Dec 27 Ilias Rosidis, Greek soccer defender (29 caps; Olympiacos FC), dies at 92
  • Dec 28 Fred Graham, American newscaster and journalist (CBS News, Court TV), dies of Parkinson's disease at 88
  • Dec 28 Erzsébet Szőnyi, Hungarian composer, dies at 95
  • Dec 28 Vilhjálmur Einarsson, Icelandic athlete (Olympic silver triple-jump 1956; Iceland's first ever Olympic medal), dies at 85
  • Dec 28 Carley Ann McCord, American sports reporter (Cox Sports TV; in-game host New Orleans Pelicans, New Orleans Saints), dies in a plane crash at 30
  • Dec 29 LaDell Andersen, American college basketball coach (Utah State, BYU), dies at 90
  • Dec 30 Johnny Ward, English rugby league hooker (4 Tests Great Britain, 3 England; Castleford 262 games), dies at 78
  • Dec 31 Basil Watts, English rugby league second rower (5 Tests Great Britain, 1 England; World Cup 1954; York RLFC), dies at 93