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On this day: July 31

Published On: Jul 30 2012 11:36:16 PM EDT   Updated On: Jul 31 2014 02:00:00 AM EDT

Mt. Fuji erupts, the Apollo 15 astronauts go for a ride, major-league baseball players end their strike, and Michael Phelps swims into Olympic history, all on this day.

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Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

2012: Author and political activist Gore Vidal ("Lincoln," "The City and the Pillar," "Myra Breckenridge") dies of complications from pneumonia in Hollywood Hills, California. He was 86.

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