John Glenn

American astronaut and politician (1921–2016)

John Herschel Glenn Jr. (July 18, 1921 – December 8, 2016) was an American Marine Corps aviator, engineer, astronaut, businessman, and politician. He was the third American in space, and the first American to orbit the Earth, circling it three times in 1962. Following his retirement from NASA, he served from 1974 to 1999 as a U.S. Senator from Ohio; in 1998, he flew into space again at age 77.

John Glenn
United States Senator
from Ohio
In office
December 24, 1974 – January 3, 1999
Preceded byHoward Metzenbaum[1]
Succeeded byGeorge Voinovich[2]
Chair of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee
In office
January 3, 1987 – January 3, 1995
Preceded byWilliam V. Roth Jr.[3]
Succeeded byWilliam V. Roth Jr.[4]
Personal details
John Herschel Glenn Jr.

(1921-07-18)July 18, 1921
Cambridge, Ohio, U.S.
DiedDecember 8, 2016(2016-12-08) (aged 95)
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
Resting placeArlington National Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic
Annie Castor (m. 1943)
EducationMuskingum University (BS)
University of Maryland, College Park
Civilian awardsCongressional Gold Medal
Presidential Medal of Freedom
Congressional Space Medal of Honor
NASA Distinguished Service Medal
Military service
Branch/service United States Navy
 United States Marine Corps
Years of service1941–1965
Rank Colonel
Battles/warsWorld War II
Chinese Civil War
Korean War
Military awards
OccupationTest pilot
AwardsDistinguished Flying Cross
Congressional Space Medal of Honor
NASA Distinguished Service Medal
Presidential Medal of Freedom
Space career
NASA astronaut
Time in space
10 days, 49 minutes, 25 seconds[5][6]
MissionsMercury-Atlas 6, STS-95
Mission insignia
RetirementJanuary 16, 1964

Before joining NASA, Glenn was a distinguished fighter pilot in World War II, the Chinese Civil War and the Korean War. He shot down three MiG-15s, and was awarded six Distinguished Flying Crosses and eighteen Air Medals. In 1957, he made the first supersonic transcontinental flight across the United States. His on-board camera took the first continuous, panoramic photograph of the United States. Various NASA video clips of John Glenn through the years.

He was one of the Mercury Seven, military test pilots selected in 1959 by NASA as the nation's first astronauts. On February 20, 1962, Glenn flew the Friendship 7 mission, becoming the first American to orbit the Earth, the third American and fifth person in history to be in space. He received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal in 1962, the Congressional Space Medal of Honor in 1978, was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1990, and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.

Glenn resigned from NASA in January 1964. A member of the Democratic Party, Glenn was first elected to the Senate in 1974 and served for 24 years, until January 1999. Aged 77, Glenn flew on Space Shuttle Discovery's STS-95 mission, making him the oldest person to enter Earth orbit, and the only person to fly in both the Mercury and the Space Shuttle programs. Glenn, both the oldest and the last surviving member of the Mercury Seven, died at the age of 95 on December 8, 2016.

Early life change

Glenn was born in Cambridge, Ohio, to John Glenn, Sr. and Teresa (née Sproat).[7] He was raised in New Concord, Ohio. Glenn studied engineering at Muskingum College. He received his private pilot's license for physics course credit in 1941. He received a Bachelor of Science at Muskingum College.

Career change

Glenn joined the United States Navy in 1942 and became a pilot. He switched to the United States Marine Corps soon afterwards. He served as a pilot in World War II and flew missions over the Pacific Ocean.

Glenn stayed in the Marines after the war. In the Korean War, he shot down three enemy planes and flew in 63 combat missions. On July 16, 1957, then-Major Glenn set the transcontinental air speed record, flying a F8U-1 Crusader from NAS Los Alamitos to Floyd Bennett Field, Brooklyn, in 3 hours, 23 minutes, and 8.4 seconds.

Project Bullet, as the mission was called, provided both the first transcontinental flight to average supersonic speed, and the first continuous transcontinental panoramic photograph of the United States. Glenn was awarded his fifth Distinguished Flying Cross for the mission.

In 1958, Glenn joined Project Mercury. He was the oldest of the seven pilots selected. Although Alan Shepard and Gus Grissom flew in outer space before Glenn did, Glenn was the first American to orbit the earth, as neither of the previous two had made a full orbit. He flew a Mercury spacecraft called Friendship 7. His first words when reaching orbit were "Zero G and I feel fine." He retired from NASA and the military after his flight.

He went into business. He became an executive for Royal Crown Cola. Glenn was friends with Robert F. Kennedy. Kennedy, an Attorney General of the United States and US Senator, told Glenn he should run for office. He planned on running for Senate in 1964, but an accident at home made him decide not to. In 1974, he ran for Senate as a Democrat. He defeated Senator Howard Metzenbaum in the primary. Glenn later beat Ralph J. Perk in the general election. He was reelected to the Senate in 1980. In 1984, he ran for President but the Democratic nomination went to Walter Mondale. Glenn was a popular senator and was re-elected several more times.

In 1998, Glenn flew on the Space Shuttle Discovery. He is the oldest person to fly in space and the only sitting US Senator to fly in space. He retired from the Senate in 1999. He helped set up the John Glenn School of Public affairs at Ohio State University. President Barack Obama gave him the Medal of Freedom in 2012.

Personal life change

On April 6, 1943, Glenn married his childhood sweetheart, Anna Margaret Castor. They had met in New Concord and played together in the school band. They were the parents of two children. Glenn lived in Columbus, Ohio with his wife.

Death change

On December 8, 2016, Glenn died at a medical center after suffering from a "serious medical condition" in Columbus.[8][9] He was 95 years old.

His body was buried at Arlington National Cemetery on April 6, 2017.[10][11]

References change

  1. McDiarmid, Hugh (January 17, 1998). "Rocket man fizzled early as politician". Detroit Free Press. Detroit, Michigan. p. 3. Retrieved October 15, 2018 – via
  2. "Voinovich backs lengthier trial for Clinton". The Akron Beacon Journal. Akron, Ohio. January 6, 1999. p. 10 – via
  3. Gorenstein, Nathan (November 5, 1986). "Biden would rather see Kennedy in Judiciary chair". The News Journal. Wilmington, Delaware. p. 8 – via
  4. Barton, Paul (March 26, 1995). "Senator Glenn Rails at New Ways". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Cincinnati, Ohio. p. 21 – via
  5. "Mercury-Atlas 6". NASA. November 20, 2006. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  6. "STS-95". NASA. Retrieved November 15, 2018.
  7. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-21. Retrieved 2013-07-12.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. "John Glenn, American hero, aviation icon and former U.S. senator, dies at 95". The Columbus Dispatch. Archived from the original on December 8, 2016. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
  9. "John Glenn, First American to Orbit the Earth, Dies". ABC News. United States: ABC. December 8, 2016. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
  10. Dresbach, Jim (December 22, 2016). "John Glenn to be buried at ANC in April". The Pentagram. Retrieved March 27, 2017.
  11. Astronaut, senator, Marine: John Glenn is buried in Arlington Cemetery

Other websites change