Milestones in the lives of 2022 high school graduates


Hurricane Katrina hits Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana, killing 1,600 people. YouTube goes online. Police arrest BTK killer Dennis Rader after 31 years.


The Blu-ray disc format is launched. In one of the biggest donations of all time, Warren Buffet donates $30 billion to the Gates Foundation. Ohio voters pass a statewide smoking ban for public places. The Greene Towne Center opens in Beavercreek.


Nancy Pelosi is elected the first female Speaker of the House of Representatives. Scouting celebrates its 100th anniversary. The first iPhone was released, changing the face of personal technology for years to come. Thirty-two students and faculty are killed in the Virginia Tech campus shooting.


A global financial crisis sets in, as a mortgage meltdown in the United States leads to an international banking crisis and stock market crashes. Unemployment increases in the following years and some foreign governments default. In September, the remnants of Hurricane Ike blast the Dayton area with high winds, leaving many people without power for a week. The GM Moraine assembly plant closes in December.


Barack Obama becomes the first black president of the United States. Michael Jackson dies at 50. Sonia Sotomayor becomes the first Hispanic person to serve on the United States Supreme Court. A conservative Tea Party movement calls for smaller government. The casinos are approved by the voters of Ohio.


Navy ends ban on women on submarines. Thirty-three Chilean miners trapped underground in a mining accident are rescued. The Medal of Honor is awarded to U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Salvatore Giunta for the first time since the Vietnam War.


Osama bin Laden is killed during a US military mission in Pakistan. The US Constitution is read aloud for the first time in the US House of Representatives. Space Shuttle Atlantis lands at Kennedy Space Center, ending the 30-year shuttle program, which began with Columbia in 1981.


Queen Elizabeth II of England celebrates 60 years on the throne. San Francisco adopts an hourly minimum wage of $10, making it the highest in the country. Whitney Houston dies at 48. A gunman kills 26 people, including 20 young students, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Snapchat is taking off, becoming one of the most popular messaging apps for teens.


The city of Detroit files for bankruptcy, as the headliner of struggling cities. Pope Benedict XVI resigns. Jorge Mario Bergoglio is elected the first Jesuit pope and chooses the name Francis. Michele Knight, Amanda Berry and Georgina DeJesus reunite in Cleveland after being held captive for over 10 years by Ariel Castro.


Robin Williams commits suicide at 63. The Dayton Flyers basketball team reaches the Elite Eight, tying its best performance in 30 years. The International Monetary Fund announces that China has overtaken the United States as the world’s largest economy. The police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri energizes the Black Lives Matter movement, as more incidents of racial tension with police follow.


The Ohio State football team wins the national championship in January under coach Urban Meyer. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is found guilty of his role in the Boston Marathon bombing. CBS is airing the final episode of “The Late Show with David Letterman,” ending its 22-year run. The Islamic State strikes on different continents, including an attack in Paris that kills 130 people.


Millions of people are wandering around trying to “catch” Pokemon on their phones, as Pokemon Go becomes the latest sudden technological marvel. Donald Trump is elected president, defeating Hillary Clinton after a tumultuous campaign. Celebrity deaths number in the dozens, from Prince and David Bowie, to Muhammad Ali and Fidel Castro, to John Glenn and Nancy Reagan.


Months after his suspension, Tom Brady is leading a record-breaking comeback to help the New England Patriots beat the Atlanta Falcons in the Super Bowl. The opioid epidemic, long a problem in Ohio, is gaining national attention. A flood of reports of sexual misconduct by high-profile men is driving the #MeToo movement, as women raise awareness of how common the problem is.


After the February 14 school shooting in Parkland, Florida, students across the United States are beginning a new level of activism, calling for tougher gun laws and better school safety. . Brett Kavanaugh is confirmed to the Supreme Court after a controversial fight. Ohio lawmakers change graduation rules in December, six months before high school graduates. Sears files for bankruptcy and Toys R Us closes all of its stores.


A Memorial Day tornado outbreak ravages the Dayton area, hitting Trotwood, Dayton, Beavercreek and other areas very hard. A man opens fire in the district of Oregon on August 4, killing nine people before police kill him. Elsewhere, the famous Notre-Dame cathedral burns in Paris, the United States women’s soccer team wins the World Cup and a college admissions scandal shows how far some wealthy parents will go to get their children in at elite universities.


Senate acquits President Trump of impeachment charges. The Dayton Flyers are ranked No. 3 in the nation in men’s basketball and then… the COVID-19 pandemic changes the world in mid-March. Businesses are closing, sports and events are cancelled, schools are moving to remote learning. Hospitals are filling up and thousands of people are dying. The government’s stimulus packages are offering direct payments as well as rent support and improved unemployment benefits. People are arguing over what public health measures should be put in place. On May 25, George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer, sparking global protests for racial justice, including many in Dayton. In the fall, Joe Biden is elected president, replacing Donald Trump, amid record voter turnout and false allegations of voter fraud. Kamala Harris becomes the first female Vice President of the United States.


On January 6, Trump supporters storm the US Capitol, briefly threatening the peaceful transfer of power. It is also the year of life through COVID. These schools that were still far away are welcoming students again; vaccines become widely available; health and mask rules oscillate as COVID outbreaks rise and fall; the 2020 Olympics are taking place after a year’s delay. Supply chain issues are causing shortages of many products. The Dayton Arcade reopens after 30 years. The United States finally withdraws from Afghanistan in chaotic scenes.


The year begins with a huge post-holiday COVID spike, with many hospitalizations and deaths. The Cincinnati Bengals make a surprise Super Bowl run and narrowly miss the Rams. Ketanji Brown Jackson becomes the first black woman on the Supreme Court. Russia attacks Ukraine, the stock market crashes, and inflation hits hard, driving up gas and food prices. May’s election is a mess, as Ohio leaders can’t decide legislative maps, but locals Nan Whaley and Mike DeWine qualify for November’s gubernatorial race.

Norma A. Roth