2020 History Events: What Happened in 2020

2020 was a year unlike any other. The World Health Organization reported hundreds of instances of pneumonia in January 2020. On December 31st, 2019, the organisation received word of a cluster of pneumonia patients in Wuhan City. The novel coronavirus was identified as the cause and given the temporary name 2019-nCoV by Chinese officials. By the end of January, Japan, Thailand, and even the United States had confirmed over 10,000 cases and 200 deaths from the new virus. In mid-February 2019, the mystery respiratory condition was given an official name: COVID-19. COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization in March 2020. It went on to propose social isolation, mask-wearing, and other methods to help reduce the virus’s spread.

While the WHO was receiving news of the coronavirus in January 2020, another huge event in the UK – Megxit – was taking place in the entertainment sector. Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, announced their decision to retire from full-time royal life on January 8, 2020. Following the news, the couple relocated to California in order to live a more self-sufficient lifestyle.

During this time, the actual Brexit took place. On January 31, 2020, the United Kingdom formally exited the European Union. The European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill, which obtained the Queen’s royal assent, was approved by the UK House of Lords. The accord was later ratified by the European Parliament.

Still in the entertainment sector, Parasite, a film from South Korea, made history by winning the Academy Award for Best Picture. Bao Nguyen, a Vietnamese-American filmmaker, depicted Korean society in his film. It demonstrated poverty and inequality by emphasising the vast disparities between the wealthy and the poor.

Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison on March 11th, 2020. Six women’s stories were heard by a jury in New York. Weinstein was found guilty of criminal sexual conduct and rape despite the greatest defence lawyers’ money and position. Chris Evans accidently leaked his own nude, which became one of the most relatable celebrity moments of 2020. To top it off, he took advantage of the occasion to remind people to vote.

Despite the presence of the coronavirus, Disney released the live-action remake of Mulan. The $200 million film grossed more over $300 million worldwide, making it one of Disney’s most expensive live-action remakes. However, it struggled at the box office in China. This is largely due to China’s government delaying the appointment of its prime minister for a year.

In the agricultural world, swarms of desert locusts were destroying hundreds of thousands of acres in East Africa as COVID-19 infection rates climbed. The United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) cautioned that the unprecedented magnitude of the swarms had the potential to be devastating if pest-control operations were not scaled up. If left unchecked, crop-eating insects might multiply by a factor of 500.

Unprecedented fires swept Australia from September 2019 to March 2020, causing incalculable destruction. Thankfully, they were able to save a large number of animals, which they then released back into the wild. It was California’s turn to cope with flames this summer. The state faced the largest wildfire in recorded history in 2020.

In the realm of sports, Super Bowl LIV took place, and Shakira and J-Lo performed a concert. The duo put on a spectacular to remember during the halftime act. Baby Nut, a monocled legume reborn as a newborn, was born as a result of the incident. We lost far more legends than we could keep track of, unfortunately. Kobe Bryant, John Lewis, and Chadwick Boseman, the legendary Black Panther actor, are among them. Bob Dylan sold his songwriting repertoire of over 600 sons to Universal Music for almost $300 million at the end of the year.

Continue reading to discover more about the events of 2020.


(Died on January 06, 2020)
Gordon Renwick, Canadian ice hockey administrator and businessman (b. 1935).

(Died on January 10, 2020)
Qaboos bin Said, Ruler Of Oman (b. 1940).

(Died on January 12, 2020)
Sir Roger Scruton, English philosopher and writer (b. 1944).

(Died on January 13, 2020)
Bryan Monroe, American journalist and educator, (b. 1965).

(Died on January 14, 2020)
Joel Robert, Belgian professional motocross racer (b. 1943).

(Died on January 15, 2020)
Lloyd Cowan, British athlete and coach (b. 1962).

(Died on January 17, 2020)
Derek Fowlds, British actor (b.1937).

(Died on January 20, 2020)
Mira Furlan, Croatian actress and singer (b. 1955).

(Died on January 21, 2020)
Morgan Wootten, American high school basketball coach (b. 1931).

(January 26, 2020)
At the age of 41, American basketball star Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash. He was regarded as one of the sport's greatest players, having won five NBA championships with the Los Angeles Lakers.


(January 31, 2020)
More than three years after the country voted for "Brexit," the United Kingdom formally exited the European Union.

(Died on February 03, 2020)
George Steiner, French-American philosopher, author, and critic (b. 1929).

(Died on February 04, 2020)
Daniel arap Moi, Former President of Kenya (b. 1924).

(Died on February 12, 2020)
Christie Blatchford, Canadian newspaper columnist, journalist and broadcaster (b. 1951).

(Died on February 15, 2020)
Caroline Flack, English actress and TV presenter (b. 1979).

(Died on February 19, 2020)
Pop Smoke, American rapper (b. 1999).

(Died on February 20, 2020)
Joaquim Pina Moura, Portuguese Minister of Economy and Treasury and MP (b. 1952).

(February 24, 2020)
Katherine Johnson, an American mathematician whose groundbreaking work at NASA was made famous by the book Hidden Figures and its film version (both 2016), died at the age of 101.

(Died on February 25, 2020)
Dmitry Yazov, last Marshal of the Soviet Union (b. 1924).

(Died on February 28, 2020)
Sir Lenox Hewitt, Australian public servant (b. 1917).

(February 29, 2020)
The Doha Agreement is signed by the US and the Taliban to bring peace to Afghanistan.

(Died on February 29, 2020)
Éva Székely, Hungarian Hall of Fame swimmer, Olympic champion (1952) (b. 1927).

(Died on March 03, 2020)
Charles J. Urstadt, American real estate executive and investor (b. 1928).

(March 04, 2020)
Nik Wallenda is the first person to walk across Nicaragua's Masaya Volcano.

(Died on March 04, 2020)
Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, Peruvian politician and diplomat.

(Died on March 08, 2020)
Max von Sydow, Swedish actor (b. 1929).


(March 11, 2020)
The COVID-19 epidemic was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization.

(March 13, 2020)
Breonna Taylor, an African American EMT, was killed by police officers in Louisville, Kentucky, when they rushed into her apartment during a botched raid; her death sparked major protests by Black Lives Matter activists and others calling for police reform.

(Died on March 15, 2020)
Vittorio Gregotti, Italian architect (b. 1927).

(Died on March 18, 2020)
Alfred Worden, Apollo 15 command module pilot (b. 1932).

(March 20, 2020)
Kenny Rogers, an American country music artist whose classics included Lady and The Gambler, died at the age of 81.

(Died on March 20, 2020)
Kenny Rogers, American singer (b. 1938).

(March 27, 2020)
North Macedonia has joined NATO as the 30th country.

(Died on April 11, 2020)
John Horton Conway, English mathematician (b. 1937).


(May 09, 2020)
Little Richard, the American singer and pianist whose mid-1950s hit songs were crucial milestones in the creation of rock and roll, died at the age of 87.

(Died on May 09, 2020)
Little Richard, American singer, songwriter, and pianist (b. 1932).

(Died on May 17, 2020)
Lucky Peterson, American blues singer, keyboardist and guitarist (b. 1964).

(Died on May 21, 2020)
Alan Merten, fifth President of George Mason University (b. 1941).

(Died on May 22, 2020)
Denise Cronenberg, Canadian costume designer (b. 1938).

(May 25, 2020)
The death of George Floyd, an unarmed African American man, during an arrest in Minneapolis, Minnesota, sparked nationwide protests and increased support for the Black Lives Matter movement; police officer Derek Chauvin was eventually convicted of Floyd's murder.

(Died on June 10, 2020)
Claudell Washington, American baseball player (b. 1954).

(Died on June 11, 2020)
Stella Pevsner, children's author (b. 1921).

(Died on June 14, 2020)
Sushant Singh Rajput, Indian film actor (b. 1986).

(Died on June 18, 2020)
Vera Lynn, English singer who was the "Forces' Sweetheart" in World War II (b. 1917).

(June 29, 2020)
Carl Reiner, an American actor, writer, and director who developed the iconic television series The Dick Van Dyke Show (1961–66) and later directed hit comedies like The Jerk (1979), died at the age of 98.

(Died on July 02, 2020)
Ángela Jeria, Chilean archaeologist (b. 1926).

(Died on July 03, 2020)
Saroj Khan, Indian dance choreographer (b. 1948).

(Died on July 06, 2020)
Ennio Morricone, Italian composer, orchestrator, conductor, and trumpet player (b. 1928)[.

(Died on July 08, 2020)
Alex Pullin, Australian snowboarder (b. 1987).

(Died on July 10, 2020)
Lara van Ruijven, Dutch short track speed skater (b. 1992).

(Died on July 12, 2020)
Wim Suurbier, a Dutch football player, (b. 1945).

(July 13, 2020)
The body of American actress and singer Naya Rivera is retrieved from Lake Piru in California, where she drowned after a five-day search.

(Died on July 13, 2020)
Zindzi Mandela, South African politician, diplomat, and third daughter of Nelson Mandela (b. 1960).

(July 17, 2020)
John Lewis, an American civil rights leader and politician who helped lead the march on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, in 1965, which was a watershed moment in the history of the civil rights movement, died at the age of 80.

(Died on July 17, 2020)
John Lewis, American Politician and Civil Rights Leader. (b. 1940).

(Died on July 20, 2020)
Michael Brooks, political commentator (b. 1983).

(Died on July 21, 2020)
Andrew Mlangeni South African political activist (b. 1925).

(Died on July 24, 2020)
Regis Philbin, American actor and television host (b. 1931).

(Died on July 25, 2020)
Peter Green, English blues rock guitarist, singer-songwriter and founder of Fleetwood Mac (b. 1946).


(July 30, 2020)
The rover Perseverance and the small robotic, coaxial helicopter Ingenuity were launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station as part of NASA's Mars 2020 mission, which was launched on an Atlas V rocket. photo source:

(August 04, 2020)
When 2,700 tonnes of ammonium nitrate explode in Beirut, Lebanon, at least 220 people are killed and over 5,000 are injured.

(August 28, 2020)
Chadwick Boseman, an American actor best known for his appearances in films such as Black Panther (2018), died of colon cancer at the age of 43. photo source:

(September 18, 2020)
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court (1993-2020), died at the age of 87.

(Died on October 20, 2020)
James Randi, Canadian-American stage magician and author (b. 1928).

(Died on October 21, 2020)
Frank Bough, English television presenter (b. 1933).


(October 31, 2020) Sean Connery, a Scottish-born actor best known for playing superspy James Bond in a series of films, died at the age of 90. photo source:

(November 08, 2020)
Alex Trebek, a Canadian-born American television personality who was best known as the presenter of the TV game show Jeopardy! from 1984 until 2020, died at the age of 80. photo source:

(November 15, 2020)
Lewis Hamilton won the Turkish Grand Prix, securing his seventh drivers' title and equaling Michael Schumacher's all-time record. photo source:

(November 25, 2020)
At the age of 60, Argentine football (soccer) legend Diego Maradona died. He was regarded as one of the best footballers of all time, famous for spectacular plays such as the 1986 World Cup's "Hand of God" goal. photo source:

(Died on December 01, 2020)
Arnie Robinson, American athlete (b. 1948).

(Died on December 02, 2020)
Valéry Giscard d'Estaing, 20th President of France, Coprince of Andorra (b. 1926).

(Died on December 05, 2020)
Peter Alliss, English professional golfer (b. 1931).

(December 07, 2020)
Chuck Yeager, the first person to fly faster than the speed of sound, died at the age of 97. photo source:

(Died on December 07, 2020)
Chuck Yeager, American aviator (b. 1923).

(Died on December 10, 2020)
Barbara Windsor, English actress (b. 1937).

(Died on December 11, 2020)
James Flynn, New Zealand intelligence researcher. (b. 1934).

(Died on December 12, 2020)
Ann Reinking, American actress, dancer, and choreographer (b. 1949).

(Died on December 14, 2020)
Gérard Houllier, French Football manager (b. 1947).

(Died on December 15, 2020)
Saufatu Sopoanga, Tuvaluan politician, 8th Prime Minister of Tuvalu (b. 1952).

(Died on December 17, 2020)
Jeremy Bullock, English actor (b. 1945).

(Died on December 18, 2020)
Jerry Relph, American politician and member of the Minnesota Senate (b. 1944).

(Died on December 19, 2020)
Rosalind Knight, English actress (b. 1933).

(Died on December 20, 2020)
Ezra Vogel, American sociologist (b. 1930).

(Died on December 22, 2020)
Leslie West, American singer-songwriter and guitarist (b. 1945).

(Died on December 23, 2020)
Leslie West, American singer and guitarist (b. 1945).

(Died on December 25, 2020)
K. C. Jones, American basketball player and coach (b. 1932).

(Died on December 26, 2020)
Brodie Lee, American Professional Wrestler (b.1979).

(December 29, 2020)
Pierre Cardin, a pioneer in the design of men's high fashion, died at the age of 98. photo source:

(December 29, 2020)
Joe Louis Clark, American educator (b. 1937).

Written by James

James has always been intrigued by dinosaurs, the universe, technology, and animals. With a Bachelor of Computer Science and years of writing expertise, he joined World Amazing Facts in 2021 as a staff writer.

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