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I came across this interesting little Johnny Cash tidbit yesterday somewhere in my internet travels (Reddit I think) and it was news to me so I thought I would pass it on for others who may not have a clue.
Apparently it's also written about in books about Johnny Cash so it certainly won't be news to everyone.
From Newspaper Archive:
On assignment as a Russian Army Morse code transmission decoder at the time, Johnny Cash was the first American to hear about (Joseph) Stalin's death. Many in Western Europe were apprehensive as to who the next Soviet leader would be. Following a lengthy inter-party power struggle, Nikita Khrushchev emerged as Prime Minister in 1958.
The newspaper article that was archived (The Post Standard) said:
Joseph Stalin, the Prime Minister of the Soviet Union and the supreme chief of the Communist Party, died today. Stalin had collapsed from a stroke on March 1 and never recovered.
"He had been in a coma since he was stricken Sunday night, and his condition grew progressively worse. Yesterday his 10 physicians said his heart was faltering. The announcement of his death was broadcast from Moscow at 4:07 a.m. Moscow time today - more than six hours after his doctors had given up their struggle," reported The Post Standard on March 6, 1953. "The official announcement said: 'The heart of the comrade and inspired continuer of Lenin's will, the wise leader and teacher of the Communist party and the Soviet people - Joseph Vissarionovitch Stalin - has stopped beating.'"
So there you go, your random piece of interesting trivia about the Man in Black.