Coca-Cola is brewed for the first time, Elvis Presley begins boot camp, the last U.S. soldiers leave Vietnam, Henry Fonda wins his first and only Oscar, and the Tennessee Lady Vols complete an unbeaten season, all on this day.
1971: Lt. William Calley is convicted of the premeditated murder of 22 Vietnamese civilians for his role in the My Lai Massacre, the March 16, 1968, mass murder of between 347 and 504 unarmed civilians in South Vietnam by United States Army soldiers. Testimony revealed that Calley had ordered the men of 1st Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry of the 23rd Infantry Division to kill everyone in the village despite the fact that his men were not under enemy fire at all. Two days later, Calley was sentenced to life imprisonment and hard labor at Fort Leavenworth, a sentence that was later reduced to 20 years and then 10 years. Ultimately, he would serve only three and a half years of house arrest in his quarters at Fort Benning before being released.
20th Century Fox via CNN
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