Dallas - TV, America wonders, “Who shot J. R.?"
Winter Olympic Games - Superstar speed skater Eric Heiden won 5 Olympic Gold Medals.
NYC - December 8, 1980 , former Beatle John Lennon was shot in front of his apartment building in New York City.
World at War - Iran and Iraq begin a territorial dispute that lasted for eight years. Iraq was declared the victor in 1988. The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan .
Abscam - the FBI started a sting operation targeting members of the US Congress.
Notable Deaths -
* Tour de France Champion: Lucien Buysse, 1892-1980, He was the Tour de France champion in 1926.
* Giro d'Italia / Tour de France Champion: Gaston Nencini, 1930-1980, He was Tour de France champion in 1960. He was Giro d'Italia champion in 1957.
* Tour de France Champion: Andre Leducq, 1904-1980, two-time champion of the Tour de France (1930 and 1932), he remains third on the list of stage winners behind Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault, with 25 wins.
* Tour de France Champion: Jean Robic, 1921-1980, He was Tour de France champion in 1947.
* Giro d'Italia: Gaetano Belloni , 1892-1980, He was Giro d'Italia champion in 1920.
Jesse Owens, 1913-1980, African-American athlete who beat Hitler's Aryan Race athletes in the 1936 Olympic Games. (See L'Equipe Sports Figure of the Decade 1930's).
Sir Alfred Hitchcock, 1899-1980, award winning British film director.
Jimmy Durante, 1893-1980, was an American actor, comedian, pianist, and singer. His gravely sing voice was distinctive. His large nose, which he used for comedic material, was famous and earned him the nickname Schnozzola. His trademark song was "Inka Dinka Do".
L'Equipe Sport Figure of the Decade 1980-1989 -
L'Equipe's athlete of the decade was Nadia Comaneci of Romania, Olympic Gymnastics Multiple Gold Medal winner. Nadia was the first gymnast to receive a perfect score (10) in Olympic competition.