On This Day

Historical Events in February 1980

  • Feb 1 Sears Radio Theater moves from CBS to Mutual Broadcasting System
  • Feb 1 Soap opera "Love of Life" ends a 28 year run
  • Feb 1 "Call Me" single released by Blondie (Billboard Song of the Year 1980)
  • Feb 2 FBI releases details of Abscam, a sting operation that targeted 31 elected & public officials for bribes for political favors
  • Feb 2 Mexican boxer Salvador Sánchez dethrones Danny “Little Red” Lopez as WBC world featherweight champion with a 13th-round TKO in Phoenix, AZ; Lopez champion since November 1976, 8th defence

Sport defeatBoxing Title Fight

Feb 3 Larry Holmes TKOs Lorenzo Holmes in 6 for heavyweight boxing title

WBC Heavyweight Champion Larry Holmes
WBC Heavyweight Champion
Larry Holmes
  • Feb 3 Mohammed Ali tours Africa as President Carter's envoy

Sport awardNBA All-Star Game

Feb 3 30th NBA All-Star Game, Capital Centre, Landover, Md: East beats West, 144-136 (OT); MVP: George Gervin, San Antonio Spurs, SF

NBA Guard George Gervin
NBA Guard
George Gervin
  • Feb 4 Bani Sadr sworn in as premier of Iran
  • Feb 4 Studio 54 holds its grand closing party on its last night in business
  • Feb 5 32nd NHL All-Star Game, Joe Louis Arena, Detroit: Wales Conference beats Campbell Conference, 6-3; MVP: Reggie Leach, Philadelphia Flyers, RW
  • Feb 5 Egyptian parliament votes to end boycott of Israel

MurderMurder of Interest

Feb 6 John Wayne Gacy goes on trial for the murder of 33 young men in Cook County, Illinois

Serial Killer John Wayne Gacy
Serial Killer
John Wayne Gacy

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 9 Rick Barry, Houston, is 1st in NBA to score 8 3-pointers in a game

NBA Small Forward Rick Barry
NBA Small Forward
Rick Barry
  • Feb 10 Ianford Wilsons "Talley's Folly" premieres in NYC
  • Feb 12 "Canterbury Tales" opens at Rialto Theater NYC for 16 performances

  • Feb 12 NY Islanders 2nd scoreless tie, vs Winnipeg Jets

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Feb 12 Richard Hadlee becomes NZ's top wicket-taker with 117

Cricketer Richard Hadlee
Cricketer
Richard Hadlee
  • Feb 13 Apollo Computer Inc incorporated
  • Feb 13 NZ beats West Indies by one wicket in cricket at Dunedin
  • Feb 13 XIII Winter Olympic Games open in Lake Placid, New York
  • Feb 14 "West Side Story" opens at Minskoff Theater NYC for 341 performances
  • Feb 14 US launches Solar Maximum Mission Observatory to study solar flares
  • Feb 14 Soviet cross-country skier Nikolay Zimyatov wins first of 3 gold medals at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics when he takes out 30k event; also wins relay and 50k gold
  • Feb 15 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 500m in Olympic record 38.03s; first of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • Feb 15 Wayne Gretzy assists on NHL-record-tieing 7 goals
  • Feb 15 East German speed skater Karin Enke wins first of 3 career Olympic gold medals with victory in the 500m at Lake Placid Winter; wins 1,000m & 1,500m in Sarajevo (1984)
  • Feb 15 Soviet cross-country skier Raisa Smetanina claims her 3rd of 4 career Olympic gold medals in the 5k event at Lake Placid; also wins 10k and relay gold (Innsbruck 1976) and relay (Albertville 1992)
  • Feb 16 Continuous traffic jam extends 176 km north of Lyons, France
  • Feb 16 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 5,000m in Olympic record 7:02.29; second of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • Feb 17 22nd Daytona 500: Buddy Baker wins ahead of Bobby Allison and Neil Bonnett
  • Feb 17 Sapporo downhill silver medallist Annemarie Moser-Pröll of Austria goes one better with gold at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics
  • Feb 17 Swedish cross-country skier Thomas Wassberg earns first of 4 career Olympic gold medals in the 15k at Lake Placid; wins by 0.01s from Finland's Juha Mieto; closest margin of victory ever in Olympic cross-country skiing
  • Feb 18 Billy Wyman said he will leave Rolling Stones in 1983 (Sure!)
  • Feb 18 Pierre Elliott Trudeau's Liberal Party wins Canadian elections
  • Feb 18 30th Berlin International Film Festival: "Heartland" and "Palermo or Wolfsburg" win the Golden Bear (tie)

  • Feb 18 Soviet figure skater Irina Rodnina wins her 3rd consecutive Olympic pairs title at Lake Placid; gold medals with husband Alexander Zaitsev (1976, 80) and Alexei Ulanov (1972)
  • Feb 18 East German cross country skier Barbara Petzold wins first of 2 gold medals at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics in women's 10k; also takes gold as part of 4 x 5k relay team
  • Feb 19 Botham a century & 13 wickets in Jubilee Test Cricket at Bombay
  • Feb 19 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 1,000m in Olympic record 1:15.18; third of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • Feb 19 Washington beats Montreal, 3-1 to end the Canadiens' 34 game unbeaten streak against Capitals; Caps 0-32-2 against Montreal since entering NHL in 1974
  • Feb 19 Swedish alpine skier Ingemar Stenmark wins the giant slalom from Andreas Wenzel of Liechtenstein at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics; also takes slalom gold
  • Feb 19 Ulrich Wehling of East Germany wins his third consecutive Olympic gold medal in the Nordic combined event at Lake Placid; winner Sapporo (1972), Innsbruck (1976)
  • Feb 20 Soviet cross-country skier Nikolay Zimyatov wins his 2nd gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics as part of the 4 x 10k relay; also wins 30k and 50k gold
  • Feb 20 Soviet 2-time world champion team Natalia Linichuk and Gennadi Karponosov win the Olympic ice dance gold medal at Lake Placid by just 0.96 from Krisztina Regőczy & András Sallay of Hungary
  • Feb 21 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins 1,500m in Olympic record 1:55.44; 4th of record 5 gold medal sweep of events at Lake Placid
  • Feb 21 Liechtenstein becomes the smallest country to produce an Olympic champion as Hanni Wenzel wins the women's giant slalom at the Lake Placid Winter Games
  • Feb 21 East German cross country skier Barbara Petzold wins her second gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics as part of the women's 4 x 5k relay team; also wins 10k gold
  • Feb 21 British figure skater Robin Cousins wins men's singles gold medal at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics; goes on to pro career, TV analysis and stage performance & production
  • Feb 22 Afghanistan declares martial law

OlympicsOlympic Gold

Feb 22 "Miracle on Ice": US ice hockey team beats heavily favoured Soviet Union, 4-3 at Lake Placid in one of the biggest upsets in Olympic history; Americans go on to win gold medal

Ice Hockey Player Mike Eruzione
Ice Hockey Player
Mike Eruzione
Ice Hockey Player & Coach Herb Brooks
Ice Hockey Player & Coach
Herb Brooks
  • Feb 22 Swedish World Cup and World champion Ingemar Stenmark wins his 2nd gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics, taking out the slalom; follows-on from giant slalom success
  • Feb 22 Aleksandr Tikhonov of the Soviet Union earns his 4th straight gold medal as part of the 4 x 7.5k biathlon relay team at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics
  • Feb 22 Soviet biathlete Anatoly Alyabyev wins his 2nd gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics as part of the 4 x 7.5k relay team; also wins individual gold
  • Feb 23 American speed skater Eric Heiden wins Olympic 10,000m in world record 14:28.13; sweeps all 5 speed skating events at Lake Placid; only athlete to win 5 gold medals at one Winter Games
  • Feb 23 France performs nuclear test at Mururoa atoll
  • Feb 23 Oil tanker explosion off Pilos, Greece, causes 37-mil-gallon spillage
  • Feb 23 Olympic giant slalom champion Hanni Wenzel of Liechtenstein wins the women's slalom, her second gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Games
  • Feb 23 Soviet cross-country skier Nikolay Zimyatov wins his 3rd gold medal of the Lake Placid Winter Olympics when he takes out the 50k event; also wins 30k and relay gold
  • Feb 24 "Canterbury Tales" closes at Rialto Theater NYC after 16 performances
  • Feb 24 Rangers score 5 power-play goals against Islanders
  • Feb 24 XIII Winter Olympic Games close in Lake Placid, New York

OlympicsOlympic Gold

Feb 24 US ice hockey team clinches gold medal with 4-2 win over Finland at the Lake Placid Winter Olympics; comes after 4-3 "Miracle on Ice" victory against hot favorite Soviet Union

Ice Hockey Player & Coach Herb Brooks
Ice Hockey Player & Coach
Herb Brooks
  • Feb 25 Coup ousts PM Henck Arron of Suriname
  • Feb 25 British political comedy "Yes Minister" written by Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, starring Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne and Derek Fowlds premieres on BBC Two
  • Feb 26 Egypt & Israel exchange ambassadors for 1st time
  • Feb 26 Military coup under Desi Bouterse in Suriname
  • Feb 26 New Zealand cricket captain Geoff Howarth 147 and Richard Hadlee 103 hold off West Indies pace quartet of Roberts, Garner, Holding and Croft during famous 2nd Test draw at Christchurch

Music awardsGrammy Awards

Feb 27 22nd Grammy Awards: Song of the Year Kenny Loggins' "What a Fool Believes" Best Album Billy Joel's "52nd Street

Pianist, Songwriter and Composer Billy Joel
Pianist, Songwriter and Composer
Billy Joel
  • Feb 27 Israel & Egypt exchange ambassadors
  • Feb 27 Terrorists occupies Dominican embassy in Bogota
  • Feb 28 "The Well-Tuned Piano" by La Monte Young premieres (takes 4 h 12 m)
  • Feb 28 US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site

Sports record brokenNHL Record

Feb 29 Future Hockey Hall of Fame right wing Gordie Howe scores in the 3rd period to become first NHL player to score 800 career goals as Hartford Whalers beat St. Louis Blues, 3-0 at Springfield Civic Center

Ice Hockey Legend Gordie Howe
Ice Hockey Legend
Gordie Howe
  • Feb 29 Michael Bracey ends 59 h 55 m trapped in an elevator, England