In 2003 I bought my first digital camera, and began posting photos on line, on my old .Mac site.  They were mostly of friends and family, and of the flowers in my yard.  My camera began traveling with me as well, going out west all the way to British Columbia.

In 2003 my Uncle Ivan and Aunt Evdokia celebrated their 50th anniversary, baby Ava was born, Nick turned 8, Maria turned 6, and Kalyna turned 11. We enjoyed barbecues, summer days on the shores of Union Lake, and the Petrusha clan got together on all the major holidays. And I, and millions of others worldwide, marched against the war–to no avail.

2003 was the International Year of Freshwater, and the Year of the Sheep in the Chinese Zodiac

Mathematically, 2003 was a prime year.  Major events:


    January 24 - The new United States Department of Homeland Security officially begins operation.

    January 26 - Super Bowl XXXVII: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeat the Oakland Raiders 48-21.


    February 1 - STS-107: Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrates over Texas upon reentry, killing all 7 astronauts onboard.

    February 5 - Iraq disarmament crisis: U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell addresses the UN Security Council on Iraq.

    February 15 - Global protests against Iraq war: More than 10 million people protest in over 600 cities worldwide, the largest war protest to take place before the war occurs.

    February 26 - An American businessman is admitted to the Vietnam France Hospital in Hanoi, Vietnam with the first identified case of SARS. WHO doctor Carlo Urbani reports the unusual highly contagious disease to WHO. Both the businessman and the doctor later die of the disease.


    March 12 - Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Ðindic is assassinated in Belgrade.

    March 13 - Human evolution: The journal Nature reports that 350,000-year-old upright-walking human footprints had been found in Italy.

    March 17 - Iraq disarmament crisis: U.S. President George W. Bush gives an ultimatum: Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and his sons must either leave Iraq, or face military action at a time of the U.S.'s choosing.

    March 19 - The first American bombs drop on Baghdad, Iraq. President Saddam Hussein and his sons do not comply with President Bush's 48-hour mandate demanding their exit from Iraq.

    March 20 - 2003 invasion of Iraq: Land troops from United States, United Kingdom, Australia and Poland invade Iraq.

    March 22 - The United States and the United Kingdom begin their shock and awe campaign, with a massive air strike on military targets in Baghdad.


    April 3 - A passenger bus hits a remote-controlled land mine in the Chechen capital, killing at least 8.

    April 9 - U.S. forces seize control of Baghdad, ending the regime of Saddam Hussein.

    April 14 - The Human Genome Project is successfully completed, with 99% of the human genome sequenced to 99.99% accuracy.

    April 21 - Nina Simone, American singer dies (b. 1933)

    April 30 - The last American-owned vehicle frame manufacturer, Midland Steel Products, goes out of business after almost 110 years, laying off almost 250 people.


    May 1 - George W. Bush lands on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, in a Lockheed S-3 Viking, where he gives a speech announcing the end of major combat in the 2003 Invasion of Iraq. A banner behind him declares "Mission Accomplished."

    May 3 - The Old Man of the Mountain, a rock formation in New Hampshire, crumbles after heavy rain.

    May 12 - In Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, 26 people are killed in the Riyadh Compound Bombings.

    May 15 - The date predicted by Pana-Wave Laboratory, a Japanese cult, on which a close encounter with an unknown planet would result in the extinction of most of humankind.

    May 15 - June Carter Cash, American singer dies (b. 1929)

    May 16 - In Casablanca, Morocco, 33 civilians are killed and more than 100 injured in the Casablanca terrorist attacks.

    May 19 - Pen Hadow becomes the first man to walk alone, without any outside help, from Canada to the North Pole.

    May 21 - An earthquake in the Boumerdès region of northern Algeria kills 2,200.

    May 23 - Dewey, the first deer cloned by scientists at Texas A&M University, is born.

    May 28 - Prometea, the first horse cloned by Italian scientists, is born.


    June 1 - The People's Republic of China begins filling the lake behind the massive Three Gorges Dam, raising the water level near the dam over 100 metres.

    June 21 - Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling, the 5th book in the Harry Potter series, is published in the UK and elsewhere.

    June 22 - The largest hailstone ever recorded falls in Aurora, Nebraska.

    June 29 - Katharine Hepburn, American actress dies (b. 1907)


    July 4 - Barry White, American singer dies (b. 1944) 

    July 5 - SARS is declared to be contained by WHO.

    July 14 - Washington Post columnist Robert Novak publishes the name of Valerie Plame, blowing her cover as a CIA operative. The CIA leak scandal begins.

    July 22 - Uday and Qusay Hussein, sons of Saddam Hussein, are killed by the U.S. military in Iraq, after being tipped off by an informant.

    July 30 - The last old-style Volkswagen Beetle rolls off its production line in Puebla, Puebla, Mexico.


    August 11 - A big heat wave in Paris has had temperatures up to 44°C (112°F), killing more than 3,000 people.

    August 14 - A widespread power outage affects the northeastern United States and South-Central Canada.

    August 16 - Idi Amin, Ugandan dictator dies

    August 19- Bomb blast destroys UN headquarters in Baghdad; Sérgio Vieira de Mello, Brazilian diplomat, dies

    August 27 - Perihelic Opposition: Mars makes its closest approach to Earth in over 50,000 years.


    September 7 - Warren Zevon, American singer dies (b. 1947)

    September 12 - Johnny Cash, American singer and guitarist dies (b. 1932)

    September 28 - A power failure affects all of Italy except Sardinia, cutting service to more than 56 million people.

    September 28 - Elia Kazan, Hungarian-born director dies (b. 1909)


    October 7 - 2003 California recall: Voters recall Governor Gray Davis from office and elect actor Arnold Schwarzenegger to succeed him.

    October 10 - Facing an investigation surrounding allegations of illegal drug use, American right-wing radio host Rush Limbaugh publicly admits that he is addicted to prescription pain killers, and will seek treatment.

    October 15 - China launches Shenzhou 5, their first manned space mission.

    October 15 - The 2003 Staten Island Ferry crash kills 11 after one of its ferries slams into a pier.

    October 24 - The Concorde makes its last commercial flight, bringing the era of airliner supersonic travel to a close, at least for the time being.


    November 9 - A lunar eclipse is seen in the Americas, Europe, Africa, and Central Asia.

    November 18 - U.S. President George W. Bush makes a state visit to London in the midst of massive protests.

    November 18 - The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, in Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, rules anti-same-sex marriage laws unconstitutional in Massachusetts.

    November 20 - Michael Jackson is arrested by police on charges of child molestation, a charge that can carry an 8-year jail term.

    November 23 - The Georgian Rose Revolution ends with overwhelming victory - president Eduard Shevardnadze resigns following weeks of mass protests over fraudulent elections.

    November 23 - A total solar eclipse is seen over Antarctica.


    December 12 - Paul Martin becomes the 21st Prime Minister of Canada.

    December 12 - Saddam Hussein, former President of Iraq, is captured in Tikrit by the U.S. 4th Infantry Division.

    December 12 - Keiko, Orca from Free Willy dies

    December 17 - The film The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is released, effectively completing the Lord of the Rings Trilogy directed by Peter Jackson.

    December 24 - A BSE (mad cow disease) outbreak in Washington State is announced.

    December 25 - Beagle 2 is scheduled to land on Mars, but nothing is heard from the lander.

    December 25 - President Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan escapes the second assassination attempt in two weeks.

    December 26 - A massive earthquake devastates southeastern Iran. Over 40,000 people are reported killed in the city of Bam.

    December 31 - The world's largest Hogmanay party in Edinburgh, Scotland is cancelled 20 minutes before midnight due to bad weather.

Nobel Prizes

•Physics - Alexei Alexeevich Abrikosov, Vitaly Lazarevich Ginzburg, Anthony James Leggett

•Chemistry - Peter Agree, Roderick MacKinnon

•Physiology or Medicine - Paul Lauterbur, Sir Peter Mansfield

•Literature - John Maxwell Coetzee

•Peace - Shirin Ebadi

•Economics - Robert F. Engle, Clive W. J. Granger

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