Today is Saturday, March 23, the 82nd day of 2013. There are 283 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On March 23, 1913, five days of heavy rain began falling in the Ohio River Valley; Dayton, Ohio, saw catastrophic flooding as the rising Great Miami River breached its levees. Hundreds of deaths in the region were blamed on the weather.

Glancing Backward Locally:

25 years ago - 1988

A motion for a "total consolidation study" to consider the feasibility of joining Athens and SRU high schools and closing two elementary schools was defeated by a 5-4 vote at last night's Athens School Board meeting.

A $30,000 grant for a computer resource center was accepted by board members at the recent Sayre School Board meeting.

The first group home for toddlers infected with the AIDS virus is ready to open in rural Sullivan County. About 200 Elkland Township residents have signed a petition against the facility, and the county commissioners have denied it tax-exempt status, but the opposition hasn't deterred Scott Eldredge, director of Best Nest Inc.

50 years ago - 1963

The Post Office Department is seeking competitive bids for an improved building to house its postal operations at Dushore, it was announced yesterday.

A delegation from Ogle County, Ill., came to Towanda recently by motor to observe the micro-filming and indexing systems used in the office of the register and recorder.

The Auditor General's Department has approved payments totaling $13,384.17 to Bradford County municipalities for use of volunteer firemen's relief associations.

75 years ago - 1938

School children from Rome and Laceyville came to Towanda in large numbers yesterday to attend the matinee showing of "Tom Sawyer" at the Keystone Theater. There were 140 from Laceyville and 85 from Rome.

Miss Joanna R. Gaylord, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry E. Gaylord of Wyalusing, is one of five Ithaca College seniors nominated for Junior Prom Queen.

Bradford County yesterday enjoyed a realistic preview of summer with the mercury hitting 82 degrees above zero, the highest ever recorded here on March 22. Official data has been kept at Towanda since 1895.

Elsewhere on this date:

Ten years ago: During the Iraq War, a U.S. Army maintenance convoy was ambushed in Nasiriyah (nah-sih-REE'-uh); 11 soldiers were killed, including Pfc. Lori Ann Piestewa (py-ES'-tuh-wah); six were captured, including Pfc. Jessica Lynch, who was rescued on April 1, 2003. Also in Nasiriyah, 18 U.S. Marines from Charlie Company were killed in the vicinity of the Saddam Canal Bridge. A U.S. Air Force helicopter crashed in Afghanistan, killing all six people on board. Grenades exploded at the 101st Airborne command center in Kuwait, killing two officers; a U.S. soldier, Sgt. Hasan Akbar, was later convicted of murder and sentenced to death. At the Academy Awards, "Chicago" won best picture; "The Pianist" won best director for Roman Polanski and best actor for Adrien Brody; Nicole Kidman won best actress for "The Hours."

Five years ago: A roadside bomb killed four U.S. soldiers in Baghdad, pushing the overall American death toll in the five-year war to at least 4,000. Vice President Dick Cheney visited the West Bank, where Palestinian leaders asked him to pressure Israel to halt settlement construction and voiced other complaints. The Seattle-based fishing trawler Alaska Ranger sank in the Bering Sea, killing five crew members; 42 others survived. Al Copeland, founder of the Popeyes Famous Fried Chicken chain, died near Munich, Germany, at age 64.

One year ago: Urging Americans to "do some soul searching," President Barack Obama injected himself into the emotional debate over the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin in Florida, saying, "If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon." The U.S. Army formally charged Staff Sgt. Robert Bales with 17 counts of premeditated murder in the deaths of 17 villagers, more than half of them children, during a shooting rampage in southern Afghanistan. Pope Benedict XVI landed in Mexico to throngs of faithful who gathered at the tarmac and lined more than 20 miles of his route into the city of Leon.

Today's Birthdays: Comedian Marty Allen is 91. Sir Roger Bannister, the runner who broke the 4-minute mile in 1954, is 84. Movie director Mark Rydell is 79. Motorsports Hall of Famer Craig Breedlove is 76. Singer-producer Ric Ocasek is 64. Singer Chaka Khan is 60. Actress Amanda Plummer is 56. Actress Catherine Keener is 54. Actress Hope Davis is 49. Comedian John Pinette is 49. Actor Richard Grieco is 48. Country musician Kevin Griffin (Yankee Grey) is 48. Actress Marin Hinkle is 47. Rock singer-musician Damon Albarn (Blur) is 45. Actress-singer Melissa Errico is 43.

Rock musician John Humphrey (The Nixons) is 43. Actress Michelle Monaghan is 37. Actress Keri Russell is 37. Actress Anastasia Griffith is 35. Gossip columnist-blogger Perez Hilton is 35. Actress Nicholle Tom is 35. Country singer Paul Martin (Marshall Dyllon) is 35.

Thought for Today: "Having only friends would be dull anyway - like eating eggs without salt." - Hedda Hopper, American gossip columnist (1890-1966).