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Leasing News is a web site that posts information, news, and
entertainment for the commercial alternate financing,
bank, finance and leasing industries


Monday, July 31, 2017

Today's Equipment Leasing Headlines

Position Wanted – Credit
  Work Remotely or Relocate for Right Opportunity
Top Stories: July 25 - July 28
  (Opened Most by Readers)
LEAF "All-Cash Acquisition"
    By Christopher Menkin
Testimonial Ads re: Leasing News Advertising
    Two Most Current
Northern Leasing Tagged for $200,000 for Fraudulent
  Inducement and Fair Credit Claims
    By Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor
Leasing #102 by Mr. Terry Winders, CLFP
   Capital Lease vs. Loan Clarification
 Bridgeport, Connecticut  Adopt-a-Dog
Thank You Rick Jones
 Associate Publisher/Webmaster
News Briefs ---
The Closing of American Bank Branches
  Banks have shuttered over 10,000 since the financial crisis

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (writer's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
Leasing News Icon for Android Mobile Device 

You May have Missed---
 Baseball Poem
  Sports Brief----
   California Nuts Brief---
   "Gimme that Wine"
     This Day in American History
       Daily Puzzle
         Weather, USA or specific area
          Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release” and was not written by Leasing News nor information verified, but from the source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “by line.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.

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Position Wanted – Credit
Work Remotely or Relocate for Right Opportunity

Each Week Leasing News is pleased, as a service to its readership, to offer completely free ads placed by candidates for jobs in the industry.  These ads also can be accessed directly on the website at:

Each ad is limited to (100) words and ads repeat for up to 6 months unless the candidate tells us to stop. Your submissions should be received here by the end of each week.

Please encourage friends and colleagues to take advantage of this service, including recent graduates and others interested in leasing and related careers. 

Will relocate for the right opportunity and can work remotely. I have (25+) years in making credit decisions, as well as helping sales team and third party originators close more transactions via understanding their applicant's financial abilities. I can create alternative or additional opportunities (and income) by knowing which type of loan is best for the borrower

Chicago, Illinois
Seasoned Risk and Portfolio Management professional with strong Credit Management background, Portfolio Management, Underwriting, Process Improvement, Collections and Workouts. Deep expertise in risk management and portfolio management within a regulated and compliance-driven banking environment. Partners with senior leadership to identify business risks and determine business strategy based on market and industry trends. Leads initiatives to improve efficiency and mitigate risk. Leverages business acumen and expertise gained through experience across multiple industries, including industrial, consumer and financial services, to develop and implement solutions, improve profits and reduce losses. Significant large-scale project management experience.
Demonstrated ability to analyze and articulate complex issues and implement process improvements. Excels in evaluating and mitigating customer credit risk, profit improvement, management reporting, loss mitigation and business intelligence. 

Orlando, Florida
As a Commercial Credit Analyst/Underwriter, I have evaluated transactions from sole proprietorships to listed companies, across a broad spectrum of industries, embracing a multitude of asset types. Sound understanding of balance sheet, income statement and cash flow dynamics which impact credit decisions. Strong appreciation for credit/asset risk.
407 430-3917


Work Remotely from Portland, Oregon

Experienced commercial banker and former commercial equipment leasing industry professional seeking full-time or part-time work out of my home in Portland, Oregon. Over twenty years’ experience in credit analysis, underwriting, sales and collections. Known for creative problem solving and strong quantitative & qualitative analytical skills.  Demonstrated ability to gather information, evaluate and make informed strategic business decisions to maximize profit and mitigate risk. Well known for ability to develop strong business relationships with Clients and large list of national equipment leasing Brokers. Please see attached resume and contact me below if interested. 

 Bookmark Leasing News


Top Stories: July 25 - July 28
(Opened Most by Readers)

(1) A letter from Paul Weiss
  Heartfelt message sent out

(2) Reaction to Weiss letter
 Reader respond to message

(3) Middlesex County (N.J.) Man Admits $2 Million Fraud
   Involving Bogus Small Business Administration Loan

(4) Starbucks to Shutter All 379 Teavana Stores
     By Danny Klein QRS Magazine

(5) CIT Direct Capital and Mintaka Financial
Receive ELFA’s 2017 Operations & Technology Excellence Award

(6) Wells Fargo Accidentally Releases Trove of Data
        on Wealthy Clients

(7) U.S. Bancorp's Policy Shift Contradicts Objective
 Of Bank's Client Federal Government

(8) Leasing declines, but still impacts used-car market
By Joe Overby, Senior Editor,

(9) Direct TV Lands in Dispute Over Arbitration Clause
        by Tom McCurnin, Leasing News Legal Editor

(10) Wells Fargo Forced Unwanted Auto Insurance
               on Borrowers



LEAF "All-Cash Acquisition"
by Christopher Menkin

Whether Leaf Commercial Capital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania will be turning a new leaf by being acquired by People's United Bank, N.A., Bridgeport, Connecticut, is not known.  There have been several LEAF companies run by the same management, such as Financial, Commercial, Specialty, Third Party Funding, Resource America and plays on the name. Recently, the vice president of LEAF’s Human Resources department requested to advertise in Leasing News, had a good idea of cost and what was required, but was not aware that their company was on the Evergreen list (1). Our policy is not to accept advertising from companies on the Leasing News Complaint Bulletin Board or Evergreen Clause Abuse list. Since this was going to be a new company, I asked if the policy was going to change, as companies who have changed to notifying lessees in advance of the termination of the initial contract may qualify to advertise. To date, there has not been a response.

In the People's United Bank press release, it was noted LEAF Commercial Capital was "one of the largest, independent commercial equipment Finance companies in the U.S.,” which Monitor Magazine lists as #4 with $477.1 million in volume in 2016.  Ascentium Capital is #1, $898.5 million; GreatAmerica Financial is #2, $847.0 million; Stonebriar Commercial Finance is #3 with $732.1. Monitor Magazine shows LEAF with 256 employees; Ascentium, 244, GreatAmerica Financial, 435, Stonebriar Commercial Finance, 31.

The press release states the company also has "a call center in Orange, California, as well as a sales and servicing facility in Moberly, Missouri." The Orange County office used to be a broker group, but is now an operation run by Rich Vohra, Vice President of Sales, with the company for over 10 years. Moberly is the location of Dolphin Capital, acquired by LEAF in 2007 (2), primarily in copier leasing (many LEAF Evergreen complaints).

"LEAF offers creative lease and loan programs to drive the sales of its vendor partners," said Jeff Tengel, Senior Executive Vice President of Commercial Banking at People's United. "These programs are delivered through a business process automation platform that combines efficiency with an outstanding customer experience."

"We are confident in our ability to maintain and accelerate our growth potential within People's United," said Crit DeMent, Chairman and CEO of LEAF Commercial Capital. "Given the Bank's extensive experience in successfully operating leasing and equipment finance platforms, they are uniquely positioned to be a valuable partner for our clients and employees." DeMent and Miles Herman, President and Chief Operating Officer, will remain with the business.

The press release stated, "Under the terms of the agreement, People's United will acquire approximately $730 million of net investment in leases and loans and retain approximately $250 million of securitizations. Remaining LEAF borrowings are expected to be repaid at close and the acquisition will be immediately accretive to People's United earnings. The transaction is expected to close during the third quarter of 2017.

All-Cash Acquisition

Press Release on People's United Second Quarter, plus comments on value of LEAF to the bank's portfolio, specifically Jack Barnes, President and Chief Executive Officer:  “We were excited to announce the all-cash acquisition of LEAF Commercial Capital, one of the largest independent commercial equipment finance companies in the U.S. The
addition of LEAF will diversify our equipment finance portfolio into the small-ticket leasing segment and enable us to leverage their highly scalable, tech-enabled origination platform. At closing, our
equipment finance units will have approximately $4 billion of assets and rank as the sixteenth largest bank-owned equipment finance entity in the country. The transaction is financially compelling and will
be immediately accretive to earnings.”  (3)

"J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as financial advisor and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP served as legal counsel to People's United Bank. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods, Inc. served as financial advisor and Winston & Strawn LLP served as legal counsel to LEAF Commercial Capital, Inc.

"About People's United Bank
People's United Bank, N.A. is a subsidiary of People's United Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ: PBCT), a diversified financial services company with $40 billion in assets. People's United Bank, founded in 1842, is a premier, community-based, regional bank in the Northeast offering commercial and retail banking, as well as wealth management services through a network of nearly 400 retail locations in Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine."

(1) Bad Guys: Companies who utilize Evergreen Clauses
       for Extra Lease Payments

(2) LEAF buys Dolphin Capital

(3) People's United News Release (19 pages)

LEAF and Resource America Articles

Complaints about LEAF Finance Income Fund III




Testimonial Ads re: Leasing News Advertising
Two Most Current

“Leasing News has testimonial ads going back almost 17 years regarding helping find top employees.  These are two of the most recent.”

Help Wanted Ads

"As a result of our ad with LN, in last 6 months, we have hired 6 National Account Managers and 1 Funding Coordinator with 15+ years industry experience."

Darren Gardner, CLFP  
Alliance Capital Corporation

Display Ad:

"Leasing News is the only place that I run ads and I don’t anticipate that this will change anytime soon. This because the target audience is perfect for RapidAdvance and we are getting a good return on our advertising dollars with you."

Jeff Schubert
Director of Strategic Partnerships


Northern Leasing Tagged for $200,000 for Fraudulent
Inducement and Fair Credit Claims

By Tom McCurnin
Leasing News Legal Editor

Northern Leasing Held Accountable For Actions of Independent Sales Office

Northern Leasing Systems, Inc. v. Kollars 56 Misc.3d 131(A) (N.Y. App. Term. 2017). 

Independent Sales Offices (“ISOs”) can be valuable marketing tools as the equipment lessor gets all the benefit and none of the responsibility for these independent contractors.  At least until now.  Northern Leasing allegedly fraudulently induced the owner of a car wash to sign up for a merchant advance and credit card machine.  When the borrower did not pay, the lessor slammed his credit.  While the lessor argued it was all the fault of its ISO, the court wasn’t buying that argument and affirmed a $200,000 damage award.  The facts follow.

Northern Leasing needs only a brief introduction.  This bad boy of leasing leases credit card machines worth a few hundred dollars and links the lease to a credit card processing fee and cash advance.  Leasing News has run scores of articles on these guys and it amazes me that they are still in business.  But for journalists, Northern Leasing is the gift that keeps on giving—a target rich environment. 

In this case, Northern Leasing retained an ISO, one Gerald Wynne of “Merchant Services” to market the credit card processing and equipment lease program to Gary Kollars who operated a car wash in New York City.  Mr. Kollars, as lessee, claimed that Wynne fraudulently induced him to enter into the transaction.  The details of the fraud are not disclosed in the case. 

Northern Leasing disavowed Wynne and claimed that he was a mere independent contractor, and they knew nothing of his fraud and his fraud was not authorized.

Surprisingly, Northern Leasing sued and dinged Mr. Kollars’ credit.  Mr. Kollars didn’t give up and introduced evidence to the jury of the fraud and the fact that Northern Leasing purchases thousands of leases from Wynne.  Essentially, the jury concluded that Wynne was Northern Leasing’s agent, and not “independent.” 

The jury awarded $150,000 damages and $50,000 in fair credit reporting act damages as well, for a total of $200,000. 

Northern Leasing appealed.  The court of appeal found that a reasonable jury could have easily concluded that Wynne was Northern Leasing agent and acted with authority.  The verdict was affirmed.

What are the takeaways here?

•  First, An ISO Does Not Give a Lessor 100% Protection.  If the broker is essentially a captive, or the lessor has a broker agreement and receives hundreds of deals a year, it is certainly possible that a jury would conclude that the lessor knew or should have known that the guy was fraudulently inducing lessees. 

•  Second, Will Your Broker Agreement Really Protect You?.  Most broker agreements will have indemnity agreements, but honestly, trying to compel a broker to shell out $200,000 is probably not a winning strategy.  I wouldn’t be surprised if Northern Leasing is still using Wynne. 

•  Third, Was the Lawsuit Really Necessary?  I get it that most back end departments of lessors want to act “aggressively.”  But I would hope that they would rather act “smart.”  This was not a good case to sue on.  It might have been better to walk away from this one, especially if the lessee has good counsel. 

The bottom line to this case is the old adage that pigs get fat and hogs get slaughtered.  Here the lessor’s primary mistake (aside from retaining Wynne) was to sue this lessee.  Know when to hold them and know when to fold them. 

Northern Leasing vs. Kollars (2 pages)

Tom McCurnin is a partner at Barton, Klugman & Oetting
in Los Angeles, California.

Tom McCurnin
Barton, Klugman & Oetting
350 South Grand Ave.
Suite 2200
Los Angeles, CA 90071
Direct Phone: (213) 617-6129
Cell (213) 268-8291
Visit our web site at
Previous Tom McCurnin Articles:

Previous Tom McCurnin Articles:



Capital Lease vs. Loan Clarification

There are many legal and tax questions regarding what is a "Capital Lease," usually with a $1.00 purchase option and a loan or "Equipment Finance Agreement."

The Office of the Controller of Currency and the Federal Reserve separates a Lease from a loan (including a $1 P.O.) for the following reasons:

1. A lease requires a non-cancelable term. A loan is cancelable

2. The accounting for Capital Leases ($1 P.O,) leases is different under GAAP requirements

3. A loan usually requires down payments, financial restrictions, or additional collateral. Leases do not contain any of these requirements.

4. Servicing a lease requires following for monthly sales tax, and annual property tax that does not exist in a loan.

5. Lease transactions require documentation not used in lending such as: Purchase orders, vendor invoices, sales tax remittance forms, acceptance forms and others.

6. Lease Insurance requires the lessee to purchase and provide "Liability" coverage in addition to the "Loss Payable Clause.

7. Lease documentation (master lease agreement) has requirements for equipment maintenance and return conditions not found in lending.

8. Lease documentation contains strong language and many defaults not found in loan documentation such as: equipment location; if location changes then sales tax changes. This requires a lease accounting package that can create location reports on multiple assets to insure proper tax remittance, or a default if equipment does not follow manufactures required maintenance schedule plus other requirements not found in traditional loan documentation.

9. Late charges on leases are usually 5% of the payment or have a minimum not found in Loans.

10. Lessees use $1 leases to control costs if they are not using GAAP accounting 

Terry is now retired. The above is from a prior column which appears current today.

Previous #102 Columns:




Bridgeport, Connecticut  Adopt-a-Dog


"My name is Uzziah and i am an 8 year old male Rottweiler mix who was owner released to BAC. I am very curious and very sweet. Come down today to meet me."

Bridgeport Animal Control
236 Evergreen Street
Bridgeport, CT 06606

(203) 576-7727

Adopt a Pet



Thank You Rick Jones
Associate Publisher/Webmaster

While I was on vacation, Rick did double-double-duty as Editor, Writer, Webmaster, Graphic designer. He has been on board here for over eight years. He also is full time Managing Editor of the Martinez News-Gazette, Martinez, California.  Previously, he was Publisher, Rivals, covering Stanford University sports, and Writer, Graphic Designer, Photographer for Landmark Communications.

    Kit Menkin


News Briefs----

The Closing of American Bank Branches
Banks have shuttered over 10,000 since the financial crisis 



You May Have Missed---

Two Powerful Life Lessons for Sales Managers
     and Salespeople from Jordan Spieth’s Caddie


Baseball Poem

“Voices of the Game"

By J. Kyle

You see fans holding their radios here and over there,
Intently watching the game, yet listening with care.
Some think us strange that we bring our transistorized friend,
Then they sit too close, and try to listen in.

So many, many voices of baseball present and past,
A very select few can make you feel that home run blast.
The team in the booth at times is the best,
The fans can hope for along with the rest.

Some of these voices have now faded away,
Going, going, gone to their final play.
The restless nights they talked us to sleep,
Just waiting for someone to take one deep.

Harry was the greatest Cub there ever could be,
There will never be another like him at ol’ Wrigley.
Vin Scully still bleeds that Dodger blue,
While Scooter will always be a Yankee too.

Nuxhall and Brennaman are my favorite radio men,
They have been a duo since way back when.
I was a boy when I first heard that familiar winning call,
“This one belongs to the Reds” now has its own place in the Hall.

So the next time you search for the game on TV,
Turn the volume way down, grab a radio, and you will soon see.
The voices of the game do much more than that old screen,
They bring you the nation’s game in a fashion unseen

   (also recommended for Football games, too.)



Sports Briefs----

Jeff Bagwell, Ivan Rodriguez, Speeches
    Highlight Baseball Hall of Fame Ceremony

Steph Curry mocks LeBron — with Kyrie right there, eating it up

Report: Fans rising up against possible Kaepernick signing in Baltimore


California Nuts Briefs---

Later start times in California schools could save sleep,
     complicate family life



“Gimme that Wine”

Vendors penalized $9M for gifts to state liquor officials

Free Mobile Wine Program

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in American History


    1498 - Christopher Columbus first sighted the island that he called La Trinidad. The island was inhabited by two tribes: the Arawaks, who were peaceful fishermen and farmers, and the more belligerent Caribs. Upon his return to Spain, Columbus described the islands to the King as very lush and pleasant, and soon the Spaniards began to colonize them. Trinidad and Tobago remained under Spanish rule from 1498 until Feb 18, 1797, when the Spanish Governor, Chacon, surrendered the islands to the British Navy. British rule continued until 1962 when Trinidad and Tobago gained their independence, after having been self-governing since 1956. The chief exports were slaves. Those that were not captured were killed and many maimed in the battles between well-armed soldiers on horses and Indians with primitive weapons at best.
    1777 - The Vermont state constitution made it the first state to abolish slavery and adopt universal male suffrage, without regard to property. It was followed to a lesser degree by other New England states, which with Vermont were destined to become strongholds of abolitionism in the 1850s. Vermont had declared itself an independent state on Jan. 16, 1777 and has been known for its “independence” ever since.
    1777 - The Marquis de Lafayette, a 19-year-old French nobleman, was made a major-general in the American Continental Army.
    1790 - The US Patent Office opened its doors. The first US Patent was signed by George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. It went to Samuel Hopkins of Vermont for a new method of making pearash and potash, useful in many applications, including bleaching cotton.
    1792 - The cornerstone of the Philadelphia Mint, the first US Government building, was put in place.
    1811 - Jane Currie Blaikie Hoge (d. 1890) birthday, Philadelphia.  Author also well-known for caring for orphans. After seeing some of the deplorable conditions suffered by soldiers in the Civil War, she became one of the leaders in sanitary reform (collecting and distributing clothing, providing nursing care, medical and hospital supplies, food, just about everything else for sanitary and health care that the army never supplied to its men). The women of the sanitary reform movement did unbelievably hard and effective work. The women of the commission received adulation immediately after the war and then their names and work were forgotten while the names of battles and how they were fought (usually forgetting the gruesome results) were glorified.
    1816 - Birthday of CSA General George H. Thomas (d. 1870), born in Southampton County, Virginia. Known as the "Rock of Chickamauga.”
(Lower half of )
    1816 - Lydia Moss Bradley (d. 1908) birthday, Vevay, IN.  American financier and philanthropist. Although left a wealthy widow, she increased the estate astronomically through wise investments and real estate transactions that rank her as a major financial genius. Her philanthropic gifts included a home for older women. In 1876, she endowed Bradley University with $2 million and 28 acres in honor of her six children who all died young.

    1831 - Helena Petrovna Hahn Blavatsky (d. 1891), birthday, Yekaterinoslav, Ukraine. Founder of the Theosophy religion/belief/philosophy that combines various religions and spiritualism and the occult. She wrote a number of books, the most important of which was “The Secret Doctrine,” “The Synthesis of Science,” “Religion, and Philosophy” (1888) and “Key to Theosophy” (1889), that are the basic texts of the movement. She died at the home of Annie Besant who carried on the movement that still has millions of followers today.
    1846 - The "Brooklyn" arrived in Yerba Buena, now San Francisco, with 230 Mormons under the leadership of 26-year-old Prophet Samuel Brannan. He was to meet other Saints who were crossing the country from Illinois.

    1849 - Revolutionizing warfare, Benjamin Chambers, Sr., obtained a patent for a “Breech-loading cannon.” It was the most successful and simple operation, which he called “an improvement in movable breeches for fire-arms and the locks and appurtenances of the same.” His wooden model was discovered in an old smithy and became part of the collection of the Virginia Historical Society.    
    1912 - Birthday of Milton Friedman (d. 2006), a Nobel Price-winning economist, teacher, and author, was born at Brooklyn, NY.  In 1946, he became a professor of economics at the University of Chicago, where he did some of his best-known work. The Chicago School, of which he was a member with like-minded scholars, promulgated influential free-market theories.  Friedman challenged what he later called "naïve Keynesian" theory with his 1950s interpretations of the consumption function. In the 1960s, he became the main advocate opposing Keynesian government policies and described his approach (along with mainstream economics) as using "Keynesian language and apparatus" yet rejecting its "initial" conclusions.  He theorized that there existed a “natural rate of unemployment” and argued that employment above this rate would cause inflation to accelerate.  Friedman was an advisor to President Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.  His political philosophy extolled the virtues of a free market economic system with minimal intervention.    
    1918 - Pianist Hank Jones (d. 2010) birthday, The Bronx.
    1919 – “The Cowboy,” Curt Gowdy (d. 2006), was born in Green River, WY.  Gowdy is known as the longtime voice of the Boston Red Sox and for his coverage of many nationally televised sporting events, primarily for NBC Sports in the 1960s and 1970s.  Gowdy called Ted Williams’ final at-bat where he hit a home run into the bullpen in right-center field off Jack Fisher of Baltimore; Tony Conigliaro’s home run in his first at-bat at Fenway Park on April 17, 1964 at the age of 19; beginning in 1960, he covered the first five seasons of the American Football League with broadcast partner Paul Chrisman; Super Bowl I; the AFL’s infamous “Heidi” game in 1968, and (after the 1968 pro football season), Super Bowl III in which Joe Namath and the New York Jets defeated the heavily-favored NFL champion Baltimore Colts. In 1971, Gowdy's telecast on NBC caused many a Christmas dinner to be delayed as the country locked in that Christmas Day to the longest game in pro football history, when the Miami Dolphins defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 27-24 in the final game at Kansas City's Municipal Stadium. He also covered Franco Harris’ Immaculate Reception" of 1972; Clarence Davis’ miraculous catch in a "sea of hands" from Oakland Raiders QB Ken Stabler to defeat the Dolphins in the final seconds of a legendary 1974 AFC playoff game, and Hank Aaron’s 715th home run in 1974 that broke Babe Ruth’s long-time career home run record.
    1921 - Birthday of Whitney Young (d. 1971), former Executive Director of the National Urban League, in Shelby County, KY.
    1930 – “The Shadow” Radio premiere.  “Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow Knows.” The popular crime and suspense program premiered on CBS radio.  Originally, the Shadow was just the narrator of the changing stories, but later he became a character with his own adventures—with the alter ego of Lamont Cranston. Orson Welles was the first Shadow.
    1931 - Birthday of great guitarist Kenny Burrell, Detroit, MI.
    1932 – The “mistake by the lake,” Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium, opened as a crowd in excess of 80,000 watched the Indians lose to the Philadelphia A’s, 1-0.
    1941 - Under instructions from Hitler, Nazi official Hermann Goring, ordered SS General Heydrich to "submit to me as soon as possible a general plan of the administrative material and financial measures necessary for carrying out the desired Final Solution of the Jewish question."  Heydrich was killed in action in 1942.  Göring was convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity at the Nuremberg trials. He was sentenced to death by hanging, but committed suicide the night before the sentence was to be carried out.
    1942 - Harry James Band with Helen Forrest cut “I’ve Heard that Song Before.” All phonographs are banned the next day due to the war until 1945.
    1943 - KISTERS, GERRY H., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant (then Sergeant), U.S. Army, 2d Armored Division. Place and date: Near Gagliano, Sicily, 31 July 1943. Entered service at: Bloomington, Ind. Birth: Salt Lake City, Utah. G.O. No.: 13, 18 February 1944. Citation: On 31 July 1943, near Gagliano, Sicily, a detachment of 1 officer and 9 enlisted men, including Sgt. Kisters, advancing ahead of the leading elements of U.S. troops to fill a large crater in the only available vehicle route through Gagliano, was taken under fire by 2 enemy machineguns. Sgt. Kisters and the officer, unaided and in the face of intense small arms fire, advanced on the nearest machinegun emplacement and succeeded in capturing the gun and its crew of 4. Although the greater part of the remaining small arms fire was now directed on the captured machinegun position, Sgt. Kisters voluntarily advanced alone toward the second gun emplacement. While creeping forward, he was struck 5 times by enemy bullets, receiving wounds in both legs and his right arm. Despite the wounds, he continued to advance on the enemy, and captured the second machinegun after killing 3 of its crew and forcing the fourth member to flee. The courage of this soldier and his unhesitating willingness to sacrifice his life, if necessary, served as an inspiration to the command.
    1944 - Sherry Lansing was born Sherry Lee Duhl in Chicago.  After a brief acting and writing career – she was head script writer at MGM for “The China Syndrome” and “Kramer vs. Kramer” – then vice-president of production at Columbia Pictures. She then became the first woman to be placed in charge of production at a major film studio, and on Jan 2, 1980, she became president of production at Twentieth Century Fox. She held office until 2004.  Her mother fled Nazi Germany and raised her and her sister by working in real estate.
    1948 - New York's International Airport at Idlewild Field was dedicated by President Harry S. Truman. It was later renamed John F. Kennedy International Airport.
    1946 - Birthday of singer Gary Lewis, born Gary Harold Lee Levitch, Los Angeles.  Son of actor/comedian, writer Jerry Lewis and Patti Lewis, the former Esther Calonico.  His band, Gary Lewis and the Playboys had a number 1 hit, “This Diamond Ring” in 1965.
    1951 - Evonne Goolagong was born Griffith, New South Wales, Australia.   Outstanding Australian aborigine (First People) tennis player who won Wimbledon 1971 and 1980 and was named AP woman athlete of the year in 1971.
    1952 - Faye Marder Kellerman birthday, St. Louis, MO.  American novelist specializing in mysteries that feature authentic Orthodox Jewish life.
    1956 - Top Hits
“The Wayward Wind” - Gogi Grant
“Hound Dog/Don't Be Cruel” - Elvis Presley
“Whatever Will Be Will Be (Que Sera Sera)” - Doris Day
“I Walk the Line” - Johnny Cash
    1960 - Elijah Muhammad, leader of Nation of Islam, calls for a black state.
    1961 - President John F. Kennedy agreed during talks held with General Chen Cheng (July 31—Aug 1, 1961), to support Nationalist China in its bid for UN membership and oppose the admission of Communist China to the United Nations.
    1962 – The National League rejected MLB Commissioner Ford Frick’s proposal for interleague play in 1963.
    1963 - Wesley Snipes Birthday, born Orlando, Florida. “Blade,” “White Men Can’t Jump,” “US Marshal,” “Major League,” among several box office hits.  On April 24, 2008, Snipes was sentenced to three years in prison for willful failure to file federal income tax returns.  The US Court of Appeals affirmed Snipes’ convictions in a 35-page decision issued on July 16, 2010.  Snipes reported to prison on December 9, 2010 and he was released on April 2, 2013. 
    1964 - Top Hits
“Rag Doll” - The 4 Seasons
“A Hard Day's Night” - The Beatles
“The Little Old Lady (From Pasadena)” - Jan & Dean
“Dang Me” - Roger Miller
    1968 - The Beatles laid down the bed tracks for "Hey Jude" during the first of a two day session in London. A 36-piece orchestra will be added tomorrow. It tops Billboard's Hot 100 singles chart for nine weeks, making it the mega group’s biggest hit.
    1970 - Chet Huntley retires from NBC, ends "Huntley-Brinkley Report."  It was NBC’s flagship evening news program from 1956, anchored by Huntley in New York and David Brinkley in Washington, DC. It succeeded the Camel News Caravan, anchored by John Cameron Swayze. The program ran for 15 minutes at its inception but expanded to 30 minutes on September 9, 1963 exactly a week after the “CBS Evening News” with Walter Cronkite did so.
    1971 - The first astronauts to ride a vehicle on the moon were Colonel David Randolph Scott and Lieutenant Colonel James Benson Irwin, who rode the four-wheeled electric cart “Rover,” an LRV (Lunar Roving Vehicle) alongside the 1,200 foot deep canyon Hadley Hills on the moon ( Apollo 15).
    1971 - Hamilton, Joe Frank and Reynolds had the top tune on the Cashbox Best Sellers list with "Don't Pull Your Love." Dan Hamilton, Joe Frank Carollo and Tom Reynolds enjoyed their first taste of success in 1965 with a group called The T-Bones when they scored the Top Ten hit "No Matter What Shape" that was used in Alka Seltzer commercials.
    1971 - James Taylor scored his only Billboard number one record with the Carole King written, "You've Got a Friend." The song would go on to win the 1971 Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male.
    1972 - Thomas Eagleton, the Democratic vice-presidential candidate, withdrew from the ticket with presidential candidate George McGovern following disclosure that Eagleton had once undergone psychiatric treatment for depression. Eagleton was replaced by Sargent Shriver, who, incidentally, was the only Democratic vice-presidential nominee who did not serve in Congress at any point in his or her career.
    1972 - Top Hits
“Alone Again (Naturally)” - Gilbert O'Sullivan
“Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)” - Looking Glass
“(If Loving You is Wrong) I Don't Want to Be Right” - Luther Ingram
“It's Gonna Take a Little Bit Longer” - Charley Pride
    1972 - White Sox Dick Allen becomes the seventh Major Leaguer to hit two inside-the-park HRs in one game. The homers help pace the White Sox over the Twins, 8-1.
    1974 - One of the President Nixon's main men, John Ehrlichman was sentenced to prison for his role in the break-in at the office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist. Ellsberg was the Pentagon consultant who leaked the "Pentagon Papers" (which purportedly told Americans how and why the U.S. really got into the Vietnam War). Ehrlichman also created the White House unit that was called the ‘plumbers' because it was intended to plug leaks.
    1976 - A stationary thunderstorm produced more than ten inches of rain which funneled into the narrow Thompson River Canyon of northeastern Colorado. A wall of water six to eight feet high wreaked a twenty-five mile path of destruction from Estes Park to Loveland killing 156 persons. The flash flood caught campers, and caused extensive structural and highway damage. Ten miles of U.S. Highway 34 were totally destroyed as the river was twenty feet higher than normal at times.
    1978 - No. 1 Billboard Pop Hit: "Miss You," The Rolling Stones. The song is the band's eighth No. 1 single.
    1980 - Top Hits
“It's Still Rock & Roll to Me” - Billy Joel
“Magic” - Olivia Newton-John
“Cupid/I've Loved You for a Long Time” - Spinners
“Bar Room Buddies” - Merle Haggard & Clint Eastwood
    1981 - African-American Arnette Hubbard installed as first woman president of the National Bar Association.
    1981 - The seven-week baseball players' strike came to an end as the players and owners agreed on the issue of free agent compensation.
    1983 – The Baseball Hall of Fame welcomed Brooks Robinson, Juan Marichal, George Kell and Walter Alston.
    1984 - US men's gymnastics team won team gold medal at LA Summer Olympics
    1986 - The temperature at Little Rock, AR, soared to 112 degrees to establish an all-time record high for that location. Morrilton, AR, hit 115 degrees, and daily highs for the month at that location averaged 102 degrees.
    1987 - The deadliest tornado in 75 years struck Edmonton, Alberta, killing 26 persons and injuring 200 others. The twister caused more than $75 million damage along its nineteen mile path, leaving 400 families homeless. At the Evergreen Mobile Home Park, up to 200 of the 720 homes were flattened by the tornado.
    1987 - Afternoon highs of 106 degrees at Aberdeen, SD, and 102 degrees at Ottumwa, IA, and Rapid City, SD, established records for the date. It marked the seventh straight day of 100 degree heat for Rapid City. Baltimore, MD, reported a record twenty-two days of 90 degree weather in July. Evening thunderstorms produced golf ball size hail at Lemmon, SD, and wind gusts to 80 mph at Beulah, ND.
    1988 - Top Hits
“Roll with It” - Steve Winwood
“Hands to Heaven” - Breathe
“Make Me Lose Control” - Eric Carmen
“Don't We All Have the Right” - Ricky Van Shelton
    1988 - Twenty-one cities in the north central U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date, including Sioux City, IA, with a reading of 107 degrees. The reading of 105 degrees at Minneapolis, MN, was their hottest since 1936. Pierre and Chamberlain, SD, with highs of 108 degrees, were just one degree shy of the hot spot in the nation, Palm Springs, CA.
    1990 - Nolan Ryan of the Texas Rangers won the 300th game of his career, defeating the Milwaukee Brewers, 11-3. Ryan pitched in the Majors from 1966 until 1993 and finished with 324 wins.
    1993 - Top Hits
“Can’t Help Falling In Love (From ‘Sliver’)” - UB40
“Whoomp! (There It Is)” - Tag Team
“Weak”- SWV
“I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)” - The Proclaimers
    1994 - The San Francisco Giants joined the battle against AIDS by staging their first “Until There's A Cure” Day at Candlestick Park. The Giants wore red ribbons sewn on their uniforms. Together with the visiting Colorado Rockies, they joined 700 Aids volunteers to form a giant human red ribbon on the field. One dollar from the price of every ticket sold went to Bay Area AIDS organizations. The Giants won the game, 9-4, behind home runs by Barry Bonds, Darryl Strawberry and Matt Williams, who hit two.
    1994 – Steve Carlton, Leo Durocher and Phil Rizzuto were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
    1995 - Heat Wave in Chicago, Illinois; 525 deaths attributed.
    1995 - Selling 331,000 copies, Selena's "Dreaming of You," her first English album, debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard chart. The slain Tejano singer becomes the first Latin artist ever to debut at No. 1.
    1997 - In New York City, police seized five bombs believed bound for terrorist attacks on city subways. 2 potential suicide bombers were shot and wounded in an explosives laden Brooklyn apartment. Gazi Ibrahim Abu Mezer (23) and Lafi Khalil (22) were recovering from wounds. In 1998, Khalil was acquitted and Gazi Ibrahim Aby Mezer was convicted of plotting to bomb a subway station.
    1998 - Top Hits
“The Boy Is Mine”- Brandy
“You're Still the One”- Shania Twain
“My Way” - Usher
“Adia” -Sarah McLachlan
    1999 - The U.S. heat wave, linked to at least 94 deaths, continued. As Chicago baked in 100-degree weather, thousands of hot and sweaty residents were forced to endure the heat without air conditioning or fans, due to sporadic power outages and brownouts.
    2002 - A plan to sell beer outside Boston's Fenway Park is approved on a trial basis by city officials. During the 14 games, brew will be available three hours before game time to one hour after games start to game ticket-holders who pass through a turnstile.
    2012 - U.S. Olympic swimming champion Michael Phelps won a record 19th Olympic medal, with gold in the 4x200metres freestyle relay.
    2013 - Republicans unveiled a series of bills designed to prevent government abuse, including the 'STOP IRS Act,' which would allow IRS employees to be fired when they take actions for political purposes.
    2014 – President Barack Obama authorized air strikes against Islamic State militants for situations in which the forces appear to threaten U.S. personnel.  Food drops were also carried out along the Syrian border to civilians trapped by the violence.



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