Jack LaLanne was one of America’s first fitness gurus, a strong and healthy man who turned his life around through good nutrition and exercise. We remember LaLanne’s life today as well as the lives of other notable people who were born this day in history.
Jack LaLanne was one of America’s first fitness gurus, a strong and healthy man who turned his life around through good nutrition and exercise. He wanted to help others do the same, so he launched his exercise TV program, “The Jack LaLanne Show,” in the early 1950s. He also launched a chain of fitness gyms and wrote several books. A bodybuilder as well, he performed a number of swimming feats, in which he’d swim ocean waters while handcuffed and towing weight-laden boats. We remember LaLanne’s life today as well as the lives of other notable people who were born this day in history.
1967: Shannon Hoon, U.S. musician who was the lead singer for the alternative rock band Blind Melon, is born in Lafayette, Indiana.
1958: Darby Crash, U.S. singer with the punk band the Germs, is born in Los Angeles, California.
1947: Lynn Anderson, U.S. country music singer known for hit singles including “(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden,” is born in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
After beginning her country music career in 1966, she became a regular singer on “The Lawrence Welk Show” from 1967 to 1969. This exposure to a broad national audience paved the way for her crossover hit and signature song, “(I Never Promised You a) Rose Garden.” The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard country chart and No. 3 on the Billboard pop chart. She won a Grammy Award and female vocalist of the year honors from the Country Music Association in 1971. Read more
1946: Andrea Dworkin, U.S. author and activist known for her radical feminist theory, is born in Camden, New Jersey.
1937: Jerry Weintraub, U.S. producer and talent agent who produced films including “The Karate Kid” and “Nashville,” is born in Brooklyn, New York.
Weintraub turned to the movie business in the 1970s. Though he failed in his attempts to form his own studio, he enjoyed a string of high-profile successes as an independent producer. His interests spanned genres and decades, from popcorn classics like “The Karate Kid” and the “Ocean’s” franchise to award-winning dramas like 1975’s “Nashville” and the 2013 Emmy recipient “Behind the Candelabra.” Read more
1936: Winnie Mandela, prominent anti-apartheid activist and the ex-wife of Nelson Mandela, is born in Mbizana, South Africa.
1932: Donna Douglas, U.S. actress known best for playing Elly May Clampett on “The Beverly Hillbillies,” is born in Pride, Louisiana.
As Elly May, she seemed blissfully unaware of her status as a bumpkin blond bombshell. Typically, she was clad in a snug flannel shirt and tight jeans cinched with a rope belt, and she seemed to prefer her critters to any beau. Chosen from more than 500 other actresses, Douglas said she felt at ease playing the role because, like her character, she grew up a poor Southern tomboy. Her childhood in Pride, Louisiana, came in handy when she was asked during her audition to milk a goat. Read more
1926: Julie London, U.S. actress and singer who had a hit with 1955’s “Cry Me a River” and starred on TV’s “Emergency!” during the 1970s, is born in Santa Rosa, California.
1925: Marty Robbins, U.S. country music singer whose signature song was “El Paso,” is born in Glendale, Arizona.
In 1967, Robbins – an avid auto racing fan – did what NASCAR followers everywhere dream of: He became a NASCAR driver himself. With money to spare and nerves of steel, Robbins bought a few Dodge race cars – he favored the Charger and the Magnum – and joined the NASCAR circuit. Though he never took home the glory of a win, he had several top-10 finishes. His racing career even helped him break into the movies – he played himself in the film “Hell on Wheels.” Read more
1919: Barbara Britton, U.S. actress who starred on TV’s “Mr. and Mrs. North,” is born in Long Beach, California.
1914: Jack LaLanne, U.S. fitness expert who hosted the long-running “The Jack LaLanne Show,” is born in San Francisco, California.
His workout show was a television staple from the 1950s to the ’70s. LaLanne and his dog Happy encouraged children to wake their mothers and drag them in front of the television set. He developed exercises that used no special equipment, just a chair and a towel. He also founded a chain of fitness studios that bore his name and in recent years touted the value of raw fruit and vegetables as he helped market a machine called Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer. Read more
1898: George Gershwin, U.S. composer who wrote the well-known works “Rhapsody in Blue” and “An American in Paris,” is born in Brooklyn, New York.
1888: T.S. Eliot, U.S. poet whose well-known poems include “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock” and “The Waste Land,” is born in St. Louis, Missouri.
1849: Ivan Pavlov, Russian physiologist known for his research into behavioral conditioning, especially in regard to dogs salivating at the prospect of food, is born in Ryazan, Russian Empire.
1774: Johnny Appleseed, born John Chapman, U.S. conservationist who planted apple trees across several states, is born in Leominster, Massachusetts.