Top news stories from 2019

Kaitlyn Bailey, Editor-in-Chief

Now that the book has closed on 2019, millions of people are reflecting on their year. From mass shootings to new science developments, 2019 marked another monumental year. Here are some of the top stories from 2019: 

Ethiopian aircraft crash

In March, all passengers and crew were killed on a Boeing 737 MAX aircraft after a crash near the town of Bishoftu, Ethiopia. The Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, killed all 157 people on board and accounted for more than half of all fatalities last year worldwide. The crash also resembled that of the Lion Air Boeing 737 MAX aircraft crash that killed all 189 passengers and crew on board. Both crashes sparked debate about the safety of the models, grounding the aircraft around the globe. 

First image of black hole is unveiled 

The first image of a black hole was named the top scientific breakthrough of 2019. “Having the first image of a black hole is a major breakthrough,” Avi Loeb, chair of astronomy at Harvard University, said. “Albert Einstein and Karl Schwarzschild would have been delighted to see this image merely a century after contemplating the modern concept of black holes.” 

Published on April 10, the Event Horizon Telescope captured the black hole located 500 million trillion kilometers away from earth. 

Notre-Dame Cathedral fire 

A major fire broke out at the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, on April 15, causing heavy damage to the iconic structure. The 850 year-old cathedral was undergoing renovations at the time of the fire, which officials believe was the cause of the fire. The blaze destroyed it’s roof and completely collapsed its spire. 

President Trump meets Kim Jong Un at boundary line 

President Trump met Kim Jong Un at the demilitarized zone in June, becoming the first United States president to visit the country. After posing for photographers, the two men had a 53 minute conversation to discuss nuclear weaponization. During the meeting, they assigned nuclear negotiation teams to decide whether or not a nuclear deal would be possible. 

Longest General Motors strike in half a century 

48,000 United Automobile Workers remained on the picket lines for six weeks to demand better working conditions and wages. The General Motors strike began Sept. 15 and ended on Oct. 25, making it the longest nationwide strike against General Motors in half a century. The workers demanded increased job security, gateway for temporary workers to become permanent, better pay and retaining healthcare benefits. 

Nancy Pelosi draws up Articles of Impeachment

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced an impeachment inquiry on Sept. 24 after President Trump was accused of pressuring Ukraine to dig up information on Joe Biden, one of his main Democratic challengers from the 2020 election, and his son. The House Judiciary Committee later approved two articles of impeachment against Trump, including abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. The House later impeached Trump, making him the third sitting president to be impeached. It is unclear whether he will be removed from office since the Senate is controlled by mostly Republicans.  

Mass shootings 

2019 marked a year of mass shootings across the U.S. According to a gun violence research group, there were more mass shootings across the U.S., then there were days in the year. The study concluded that there were 417 mass shootings in the U.S. 

In August, two mass shootings within just 24 hours killed at least 31 people and wounded dozens of others. On Aug. 3, an armed man entered a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, and opened fire on shoppers killing at least 20 people. Around 1 a.m. on Aug. 4, just 13 hours after the attack, another man opened fire in a popular bar in Dayton, Ohio. Police responded to the attack within 30 seconds; however, nine people were reported dead. 

A July shooting at a Garlic Festival in the San Francisco Bay Area left three people dead and a dozen others injured, while others were wounded in a drive-by shooting spree in Odessa and Midland, Texas, killing 12 and wounding 24 others. 

Other mass shootings were targeted towards religious groups, including a Texas Church shooting that killed two people in December. A Jersey City shooting that left six people dead, including the two suspects, inside a Jewish grocery store. Authorities confirmed the suspects targeted the Kosher Supermarket and had been planning the attack for months. Authorities also said the attack was fueled by both anti-Semitism and anti-law enforcement views. 


Major teams including the New England Patriots, Washington Nationals, and St. Louis Blues, and Toronto Raptors made headlines after winning major postseason competitions. The New England Patriots won their sixth National Football League (NFL) championship at Super Bowl 53, while the Nationals won their first World Series in franchise history. The St. Louis Blues won their first Stanley Cup in franchise history. The Toronto Raptors defeated the Golden State Warriors in six games to capture their first championship in franchise history.

Along with monumental firsts and wins for sports teams, 2019 also saw many sports scandals and controversy. In March, 28 members of the U.S. Women’s National Team filed a gender discrimination lawsuit, alleging that they were being discriminated because of their gender. Antonio Brown also made headlines after he refused to take the field over a helmet dispute with the NFL during training camp. 

Other scandals included a November report which detailed a filming system the Houston Astros allegedly used in 2017 to steal signs and cheat. Colin Kaepernick also made television after he backed out and moved the location of an anticipated NFL workout last minute.