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This Day in History: Friday, January 29, 2022

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Elvis Presley made his first television appearance in 1956 on CBS musical/variety hour “Stage Show”…On a classic episode of CBS sitcom “The Honeymooners” in 1956, Ralph Kramden (Jackie Gleason) competed on the game show called “The $99,000 Answer” to put his music knowledge to the test but his performance did not turn out as well as he had hoped…Detective drama “Barnaby Jones,” starring Buddy Ebsen and Lee Meriwether, debuted on CBS in 1973…”Chico and the Man” star Freddie Prinze, 22, shot and mortally wounded himself in 1977.  He died the following day…Newsmagazine “CBS Sunday Morning” debuted in 1979. Its original host was Charles Kuralt. Charles Osgood took over in 1994. Former “Today” anchor Jane Pauley has hosted since 2016. It has been TV’s most watched Sunday morning program for nearly 12 consecutive years; its most recent edition (Jan. 23) drawing 5.7 million viewers…Two short-lived ABC series launched: “Spenser: For Hire” spin-off “A Man Called Hawk” in 1989 and animated political satire “Capitol Critters” in 1992…A one-hour episode of NBC’s “Friends” aired following “Super Bowl XXX” in 1996. At 52.9 million viewers, the telecast still remains the most-watched post-Super Bowl telecast, to date…Half-hour therapy drama “In Treatment” launched on HBO in 2008. Gabriel Byrne starred in the show’s first three seasons through 2010. Its fourth season was released in May 2021 with Uzo Aduba in the lead role.

The Rolling Stones released single “Let’s Spend the Night Together” in 1967…Charity single “We Are the World” was recorded by supergroup USA for Africa (Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie, Quincy Jones, Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, and other pop stars in 1985.

The U.S. space shuttle Challenger exploded just 73 seconds after takeoff in 1986. All seven of its crew-members were killed. A reported 85 percent of Americans had heard the news within an hour of the accident. The spacecraft disintegrated over the Atlantic Ocean, off the coast of Cape Canaveral, Florida at 11:39 a.m. ET. The disaster was caused by the failure of the two redundant O-ring seals in a joint in the Space Shuttle’s right solid rocket boost.

Celebrity Birthdays
Actor Nicholas Pryor (“Risky Business”) is 87; “MASH” star Alan Alda is 86; actress Susan Howard (“Dallas”) is 80; Marthe Keller (“Marathon Man”) is 77; model and actress Barbi Benton is 72; director Frank Darabont (“The Green Mile,” “The Shawshank Redemption”) is 64; guitarist Dave Sharp of The Alarm is 63; singer Sam Phillips is 60; guitarist Dan Spitz (Anthrax) is 59; bassist Greg Cook of Ricochet is 57; Gospel singer Marvin Sapp is 55; singer-songwriter Sarah McLachlan is 54; rap artist DJ Muggs with Cypress Hill is also 54; actress Kathryn Morris (“Cold Case”) is 53; humorist Mo Rocca is also 53; keyboardist Jeremy Ruzumna of Fitz and the Tantrums is 52; singer Anthony Hamilton is 51; singer Monifah is 50. Actor Gillian Vigman (“The Hangover” films) is 50; keyboardist Brandon Bush (Train) is 49; actress Terri Conn (“One Life To Live”) is 47; rapper Rick Ross is 45; singer Joey Fatone of ’N Sync is 45; actress Angelique Cabral (“Life in Pieces”) is 43; actor Rosamund Pike (“Gone Girl”) is 43; singer Nick Carter of Backstreet Boys is 42; actor Vinny Chhibber (“The Red Line”) is 42; actor Elijah Wood (“The Lord of the Rings”) is 41; rapper J. Cole is 37; actor Alexandra Krosney (“Last Man Standing”) is 34; actor Yuri Sardarov (“Chicago Fire”) is 34; actress Ariel Winter (“Modern Family”) is 24.

Did You Know?
After production of “Barnaby Jones” completed, producers were considering a TV-movie crossover between this show and Buddy Ebsen’s previous show, “The Beverly Hillbillies. The storyline would have opened with Jed Clampett (Ebsen) being kidnapped, and Barnaby Jones (also played by Ebsen) hired to locate him. That TV movie was never produced, but a similar storyline was created for the 1993 big screen version of “The Beverly Hillbillies,” with Ebsen returning in a cameo as Barnaby Jones, hired by Miss Hathaway to find the missing Granny.