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What were local cultural touchstones for teen boomers, youngest and oldest?

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Memorable events

for local boomers

The following are highlights of local events that took place when the youngest and oldest boomers were teen­agers.

The oldest (born 1946)

1962: Ohio astronaut John Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth.

1964: Paul Heltsley III, 20, of Akron, became a casualty of the Vietnam War. The medic assigned to treat sick Vietnamese was killed by Viet Cong fire in the Mekong Delta.

Akron’s Tallmadge Parkway collapsed, killing three people — a 10-year-old girl and two rescuers.

The Akron City Council passed fair housing legislation. A voter initiative later nullified that, changing the charter to require the council to consult with voters before passing legislation on race relations. The U.S. Supreme Court eventually found the charter change discriminatory.

The Cleveland Browns beat the Baltimore Colts 27-0 to win the NFL championship for the fourth and final time in the century.

The youngest (born 1964)

1977: A sewer explosion, caused when solvents were dumped from tanks at the strikebound Patch Rubber Co., did $10 million in damage in West Akron. Sections of West Exchange Street caved in and a trench was blown through much of Glendale Cemetery.

1978: Devo released its debut album, establishing the Akron group as a pioneer of rock’s New Wave movement.

Firestone agreed to recall its radial 500 tire.

1980: Summit County Judge James Barbuto was convicted of gross sexual imposition for attacking a female courthouse clerk, and of intimidating sheriff’s deputies investigating sex charges against him.

1982: Akron’s era of passenger tire production came to an end when the last tire rolled off a General Tire assembly line.


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