1947: Ronald Reagan and Jane Wyman separated.
1961: Jimmy Dean’s “Big Bad John” became the first country single to be certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.
1963: Singer Dinah Washington died of an overdose of sleeping pills in Detroit. She was 39.
1972: Alexander’s department store in New York stayed open late so singer Alice Cooper could do his Christmas shopping.
1977: The movie “Saturday Night Fever” opened in New York.
1978: The movie “Superman,” starring Christopher Reeve and Margot Kidder, opened in Los Angeles.
1980: Fans around the world paid tribute to John Lennon, six days after he was shot to death in New York City. Hundreds of silent vigils were held at 2 p.m. Eastern time for ten minutes at the request of Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono.
1984: Madonna had her first number-one hit when “Like a Virgin” hit the top of the “Billboard” singles chart.
Today’s birthdays: Actor Hal Williams (“227,” “Sanford and Son”) is 81. Singer Joyce Vincent-Wilson of Tony Orlando and Dawn is 69. Actress Patty Duke is 69. Actress Dee Wallace is 67. Bassist Cliff Williams of AC/DC is 66. Singer-guitarist Mike Scott of The Waterboys is 57. Singer-whistle player Peter “Spider” Stacy of The Pogues is 57. Actress Cynthia Gibb (“Fame”) is 52. Singer Brian Dalyrimple of Soul for Real is 40. Actress Vanessa Hudgens (“High School Musical”) is 27. Singer Tori Kelly is 23.