John Glenn, first American to orbit Earth, is no more

John Glenn, first American to orbit Earth, is no more

Former NASA astronaut John Glenn, the first American to orbit Earth, passed away on Thursday at the age of 95 years.

Glenn orbit Earth as part of Mercury Seven, the American space agency’s select group of seven astronauts were chosen to make space journeys for the first time in the history of the United States.

He circled our planet for nearly 5 hours in a tiny space capsule called the Friendship 7 in February 1962. He gained instantaneous fame on his return to the ground.

After the space mission, he switched gears and started a political career in his home state of Ohio. He served as a U.S. senator for more than two decades. He played a key role in efforts like slowing down the proliferation of deadly nuclear weapons around the globe.

The Discovery Channel will honor his legacy by airing an encore episode of “When We Left Earth: The NASA Missions” on Sunday, Dec. 11, 2016. The documentary will tell the story of the nation’s space exploration and feature interviews with astronauts who will recount the excitement and dangers of space travel.

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