john glenn, symbol of the space age, dies aged 95
john glenn, symbol of the space age, dies aged 95
dec 09, 2016

john glenn, symbol of the space age, dies aged 95



john glenn who rocketed into history as the first american to orbit the earth and the oldest person in space, dies aged 95. he was one of NASA’s original seven mercury astronauts and by age 77 he was still going to space as part of the discovery mission, launched oct. 29, 1998. read more – ‘remembering john glenn’ here


john glenn dies aged 95 american astronaut designboom

a very cool guy! after he had spent nearly five hours in space, glenn’s first words upon stepping out of the capsule were, ‘it was hot in there’.


during ‘friendship 7‘s first orbit, in 1962, serious problems occurred. the automatic control system began to malfunction, sending the capsule into erratic movements. glenn switched to manual control and regained command of the craft. traveling at its immense speed, the heat shield on the base of the capsule was loose and would be incinerated if the shield failed to absorb and dissipate the extremely high reentry temperatures. it was decided that the craft’s retrorockets, usually jettisoned before reentry, would be left on in order to better secure the heat shield. less than a minute later, ‘friendship 7’ slammed into earth’s atmosphere. during glenn’s fiery descent back to earth, the straps holding the retrorockets gave way and flapped violently by his window as a shroud of ions caused by excessive friction enveloped the spacecraft, causing him to lose radio contact with mission control. as mission control anxiously waited for the resumption of radio transmissions that would indicate glenn’s survival, he watched flaming chunks of retrorocket fly by his window. after four minutes of radio silence, glenn’s voice crackled through loudspeakers at mission control, and ‘friendship 7’ splashed down safely in the atlantic ocean. he was picked up by the USS destroyer ‘noa’, and his first words upon stepping out of the capsule and onto the deck of the ‘noa’ were, ‘it was hot in there’. read more of this story here.


john glenn dies aged 95 american astronaut designboom
all images courtesy NASA


glenn, a marine pilot – acclaimed a national hero – flew 149 missions in WW II and korea, was also america’s third man in space (after alan shepard and gus grissom). 

john glenn dies aged 95 american astronaut designboom

john glenn dies aged 95 american astronaut designboom

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