A closer look at key historic events that took place on April 15:

In 2019, Norte-Dame de Paris catches fire

The Notre-Dame de Paris caught fire from what is believed to be an electrical short circuit, possibly related to ongoing renovation work on the cathedral’s roof. Two days after the fire, French president Emmanuel Macron set a five-year deadline to restore the cathedral. €840 million in donations were given for the rebuilding effort by 2021. The cathedral is expected to reopen in December 2024.

Flames on the roof of the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, 15 April 2019. A fire started in the late afternoon in one of the most visited monuments of the French capital. EPA/IAN LANGSDON

In 2013, the Boston Marathon bombing occurs

In a domestic terrorist attack, two homemade pressure cooker bombs were planted by brothers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev at the annual Boston Marathon on April 15. They were detonated 14 seconds apart near the finish line, resulting in the deaths of 3 people, injury of hundreds, of which 17 lost limbs.

A woman lays a Boston Strong tee shirt on a memorial on Boylston Street following a moment of silence at 2:50pm, marking the one-week anniversary of the bombing attack on the Marathon, in Boston, Massachusetts, USA 22 April 2013. EPA/DOMINICK REUTER

In 1989, the Hillsborough disaster takes place

At an FA Cup semifinal soccer match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield, England, a crush of fans ultimately resulted in 97 deaths and 760 injuries. The disaster was largely attributed to mistakes made by the police. The last victim of the crush died of brain damage in 2021.

Tributes to the victims of the Hillsborough disaster outside the Shankly Gates at Anfield, the day after the 25th anniversary of the tragedy in which 96 Liverpool supporters lost their lives.

In 1955, the first McDonald’s franchise opens

The first McDonald’s drive-in was opened in 1940 by brothers McDonald in San BernardinoCalifornia. In 1948, the brothers opened the first restaurant. In 1954, Ray Kroc milkshake mixing machine, a distributor found great promise in their restaurant concept, and became their franchise agent. On 15 April, 1955, Kroc established McDonald’s Corporation in Des Plaines, Illinois and also opened the first McDonald’s franchise east of the Mississippi River. In 1961, he bought out the brothers.

McDonald’s original store at original Ann Arbor location, 2000 W. Stadium. Photo from 1961 Omega, the Ann Arbor High School yearbook. Flickr

In 1912, the Titanic sinks

The British luxury passenger liner sank en route to New York City, four days after leaving Southampton, Hampshire, England for its maiden voyage, two and a half hours after it struck an iceberg near Newfoundland, Canada. Many passengers could not escape the ship, due to the limited number of lifeboats. As a result, about 1,500 passengers lost their lives.

The British liner Titanic sails out of Southampton, England, at the start of its doomed voyage on April 10, 1912. The ship struck an iceberg and sank on April 14-15, killing more than 1,500 of the 2,200 people aboard, many of them because there weren’t enough lifeboats. (AP Photo)

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