On this day in 1985 actor Rock Hudson died of complications from AIDS. On July 25th he announced that he had the disease, but it didn't hit home for many Americans until he died. He was friends with President Ronald Reagan from their acting days together and his death caused the government to take a serious look at AIDS. He was the first celebrity to die from the disease.
On this day in 2006 a gunman takes hostages in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania at an Amish School and kills five students before turning the gun on himself. He also severely wounded five more students. Charles Roberts was a disgruntled milk truck driver, and he arrived at the school with arsenal of weapons. He order all the male students to leave the building. When police arrived he told a 911 dispatcher if they didn't leave he would start shooting hostages. They didn't leave and he killed the five girls. When the police entered the building he shot himself in the head.
On this day in 1780 British Major John Andre is hanged for his role in the plot to have Benedict Arnold hand over West Point to the British in return for a large sum of money. Andre had been behind enemy lines for a few weeks and was the go-between for Arnold and the British high command. He was caught by three highway men who had only intended to rob him, but upon searching his shoes they found papers that implicated himself and Arnold in a treacherous plot.