On this day: April 12

POSTED: 02:42 PM PDT Apr 09, 2013    UPDATED: 11:00 PM PDT Apr 11, 2016 

The American Civil War begins, FDR dies, a Soviet cosmonaut becomes the first human to travel into space, and the first space shuttle lifts off, all on this day.

OTD April 12 - Boxcar Willie
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1999: Country music singer-songwriter Boxcar Willie dies of leukemia at the age of 67 in Branson, Missouri. Born Lecil Travis Martin, "Boxcar Willie" was originally a character in a ballad he wrote, but he later adopted it as his own stage name. He had a top 40 country hit with "Bad News" in 1982 and opened a music theater in Branson in 1985, becoming one of the first country stars to open a show in an area that was to become a popular entertainment tourist destination.


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