THE ATTIC ROOM / NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY THE ATTIC ROOM / NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Astronaut John Glenn (1921-2016) on board the Mercury spacecraft Friendship 7. It was during this mission that Glenn became the first American astronaut to orbit the Earth. Friendship 7 was launched on 20th February 1962 for the Mercury-Atlas 6 mission. Glenn spent some four and a half hours in space and orbited the Earth three times, before splashing down in the Atlantic Ocean. In later life, Glenn became a senator (D-OH), serving from 1974-1999. In 1998 he became the oldest person in space, at the age of 77, when he served as a payload specialist on the Space Shuttle Discovery mission STS-95.
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