Died April 4

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. inspired millions during his lifetime to demand human rights for all people, and in the decades since his death, he has become an icon for the ideals of nonviolent civil disobedience against unjust laws. In 1964, he won the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his groundbreaking work in the struggle for civil rights in America. His organization, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, still carries on his work in securing equality for all Americans. We remember King's life today as well as the lives of other notable people who died this day in history.

 Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including acting legend Heath Ledger.

2013: Roger Ebert, U.S. movie critic and screenwriter who was the movie critic for the Chicago Sun-Times and co-host with Gene Siskel of the TV show "At the Movies," dies at 70.

Ebert was not your typical cultural critic. Intellectual and gifted writer though he was, he was a movie critic of the people. He loved "Argo." He loved "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" and "Minority Report" and "The Godfather." He loved "Citizen Kane" (his vote for the "most important" movie of all time) and "Fargo" and "Juno." He loved the movies we actually watch – and we loved him for it. Read more




2011: Scott Columbus, U.S. musician known best as the drummer for the heavy metal band Manowar, dies at 54.

2007: Bob Clark, U.S. director, producer and screenwriter known best for his movies "A Christmas Story" and "Porky's," dies at 67.

2003: Anthony Caruso, U.S. character actor who appeared in more than 100 movies, including playing Captain Juan Ortega on Walt Disney's "Zorro," dies at 86.

1999: Early Wynn, U.S. Hall of Fame pitcher who finished his career with exactly 300 wins, dies at 79.

1999: Bob Peck, English actor known best for his role as gamekeeper Robert Muldoon in the movie "Jurassic Park," dies at 53.

1999: Faith Domergue, U.S. actress who appeared in many movies and TV shows including the film "Where Danger Lives" with Robert Mitchum, dies at 74.

1996: Barney Ewell, U.S. athlete who won one gold and two silver medals as a sprinter at the 1948 London Olympics, dies at 78.

1995: Priscilla Lane, U.S. actress known best for her roles in the films "Saboteur" and "Arsenic and Old Lace," dies at 79.

1993: Alfred Mosher Butts, U.S. architect famous for inventing the popular game Scrabble, dies at 93.

1992: Arthur Russell, U.S. cellist and producer who worked with artists including Talking Heads and Phillip Glass, dies at 40.

1987: C.L. Moore, U.S. author who was one of the first women to write in the sci-fi and fantasy genre and co-wrote many stories with her husband, Henry Kuttner, including the story that supplied the basis for the movie "The Last Mimzy," dies at 76.

1983: Gloria Swanson, U.S. actress who had a long and successful Hollywood career and who was well-known for her role as Norma Desmond in "Sunset Boulevard," dies at 84.

1980: Red Sovine, U.S. country music singer who had a No. 1 country hit in 1976 with "Teddy Bear," dies at 61.

1979: Edgar Buchanan, U.S. actor known best as "Uncle Joe Carson" on the TV series "Petticoat Junction" and "Green Acres," dies at 76.

1970: Byron Foulger, U.S. character actor who appeared in more than 90 television series including "I Love Lucy" and "The Andy Griffith Show," dies at 70.

1968: The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., U.S. civil rights leader, is assassinated at 39.

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said about himself, "In the quiet recesses of my heart, I am fundamentally a clergyman, a Baptist preacher." We remember him today as a martyr for the civil rights struggle, a voice for peace and an American hero, thanks in large part to the enduring power of his sermons and speeches. King's words and the ideas behind them cemented his legacy as one of the nation's greatest minds. His famous "I Have a Dream" speech during the March on Washington in 1963 would be enough to earn him a place of honor in American history, but King delivered so much more from the pulpit and podium during his life. Read more



1967: Al Lewis, U.S. lyricist known best for his song "Blueberry Hill," dies at 65.

1841: William Henry Harrison, U.S. politician who was the ninth president of the United States, dies at 68.

Click to discover notable people who were born this day in history including acting legend Heath Ledger.