History of bad weather on December 8

Dear Tom,
It seems that Dec. 8 has had a history of bad weather in Chicago. In 1972, United Flight 553 crashed near Midway Airport due to inclement weather, and I also remember that there were snowstorms in 1977, 1978 and 2005. Do the weather records support this?
Jack Bannon, Wheaton
Dear Jack,
While other dates have received considerably more snowfall, Dec. 8 has had more than its share of significant snowfalls. Using a 2-inch minimum threshold, snowfalls have occurred in 11 years, more than any other December day. In fact, only Jan. 12 with 13 years and Jan. 14 with 12 years have logged more. The largest snowfall on Dec. 8 was 6.9 inches in 1977, followed by 6.7 inches in 2005, 5.6 inches in 1958 and 5.4 inches in 1975. In 1978, snowfall was only a trace, but 6.9 inches did fall on Dec. 7.

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