John Glenn, Astronaut and US Senator, Dies at 95

NASA legend is prominent character in this month’s “Hidden Figures”

john glenn
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John Glenn, former NASA astronaut and U.S. senator from Ohio, died on Thursday at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, according to the Associated Press. He was 95.

Glenn had many prominent roles in American history, including becoming the first American to orbit the Earth back in 1962. Glenn was the fifth person in space and only the third American.

A Marine pilot who flew 59 successful missions in World War II, Glenn went on to become the oldest person to enter space in 1998.

Glenn is depicted in this month’s awards-bait film “Hidden Figures,” which stars Taraji P. Henson and Octavia Spencer as NASA mathematicians who played significant roles in the U.S. space program in the 1960s. Glenn is portrayed by Glen Powell (“Everybody Wants Some!!”).

Ed Harris also played Glenn in Philip Kaufman’s Oscar-winning 1983 movie “The Right Stuff” about the Mercury 7 program.

Glenn won a seat in the United States Senate as a Democrat in 1974 and was re-elected in 1980 by the largest margin in the history of the state of Ohio. He would keep the gig until 1999.

In 1984, he pursued a run for the White House, losing the Democratic nomination to Walter Mondale.

“John Glenn is, and always will be, Ohio’s ultimate hometown hero, and his passing today is an occasion for all of us to grieve,” Ohio Gov. John Kasich told the Columbus Dispatch. “As we bow our heads and share our grief with his beloved wife, Annie, we must also turn to the skies, to salute his remarkable journeys and his long years of service to our state and nation.”

Glenn’s body will lie in state at the Ohio Statehouse for a day, and a public memorial service will be held at Ohio State University’s Mershon Auditorium, according to the Dispatch.

He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in a private service.