Oh, that view is tremendous!
Safe travels to the heavens, Senator Glenn:
The first American to orbit the Earth has died. John Glenn was the last surviving member of the original Mercury astronauts. He would later have a long political career as a U.S. senator, but that didn’t stop his pioneering ways.
Update to include this sweet photo h/t napolean:
A sweet thing: The late astronaut and senator John Glenn and his wife Annie were married for *73 years*. Condolences, Annie. pic.twitter.com/KbTykwcIP6
— Steve Silberman (@stevesilberman) December 8, 2016
Saw this picture in Josh Marshall’s twitter feed of Glenn and his wife looking no more then maybe 18
A truly good and brave man. His devotion to his wife is the best indication of the quality of his character. Bon voyage, Senator!
I loved the scene in “The Right Stuff” where John Glenn won’t tell his wife to let LBJ into their house to be congratulated on TV because she is petrified (because she stutters) and LBJ has a hissy fit in his car. That’s a good man.
The photo of the young John and Annie in that tweet is adorable.
He may not like this, but my favorite story about John Glenn is about his pee: http://www.maximumfun.org/memory-palace/memory-palace-episode-61-glowing-orbs. Thanks to all who have dedicated their lives to exploration, science, and improving the human condition.
That is adorable!
Man, The Right Stuff was great. In pace requiescat, Senator Glenn.
@Mary G: Adorable!! 73 years of marriage. Wowzers.
RIP Mr. Glenn.
Me too! Great movie.
RIP to a great astronaut, good politician, and by all accounts a good man.
@raven: “Magnet ass”… that’s awesome.
Bless you, Senator Glenn, and thank you.
Is Glenn the one who punched the asshole who said the moon landing was fake? If so someone please post the UTube.
Also FUCK 2016. Only 23 days left. Thank the goddess.
The thing that scares me is that we think 2016 was bad, look at what’ll happen within the first month of 2017. We ain’t seen nothing yet.
@Mary G: Fcuk LBJ
Adding, Donald Moffat’s maniacal portrayal of the president is hilarious in that film
Glenn was also pretty instrumental in shutting down testing women to be astronauts in the 1960s. He testified before Congress that test pilots were best suited to be astronauts, even though women were not permitted to at the time be test pilots, and even though he, technically, didn’t meet the current qualifications to be an astronaut either, as was pointed out during the hearings. I’m not saying he wasn’t a good person; I think he truly was, but he was also a product of his times. I think his views on women evolved over the years, which is a good thing, but I remember him trying to come up with a good answer when he was sent back into space in the 1990s (when the story of the women who had gone through initial testing for space, the Mercury 13, came back briefly into the news) about why it was so essential to test the effects of space on the elderly, seeing as how he was a man and the majority of the elderly are women.
Again, he was a good person, but it’s okay to remember him as the complicated human he was.
You realize what’s going to happen in January of next year, right? At this point, I’d keep 2016 going forever if I could.
That was Buzz Aldren (sp?) who, at least last week, was in a hospital in NZ or Australia after falling ill in Antartica.
I was 10 when he orbited the earth, that was probably the perfect age to have a hero and as a sci-fi fan who could be a bigger hero than an honest to god spaceman?
God speed, John Glenn.
I’m pretty sure that was Buzz Aldrin.
What a wonderful photo! I love it!!
@Chris: I know.
@slag: I know.
Really, I do.
No, that was Buzz Aldrin. Another hero even before he punched that asshole. Also maybe on his last voyage soon, he was vacationing in Antarctica and had to be medivaced to Australia.
That was Buzz Aldrin punching out “journalist” Bart Sibrel.
Fuck you 2016.
I especially love the high freckle count in the picture. They had known each other since they were kids.
@Helen: @Helen: Then stop wishing 2017 on us, k?
@Bailey: Woo yeah. That made me feel good even tough it wasn’t Glenn. Thanks.
They really epitomised what we used to think of as “all-American kids.” I’m glad we’ve broadened the definition these days, but I’m sure you know what I mean. They could have stepped right out of “Pleasantville” or something. Just adorable.
(“High freckle count,” hee.)
Thing is, we all know 2017 will be a shitshow and will prepare for it as best we can. I’m not alone having headed into 2016 telling my kid she was about to witness history as we elected American’s first woman president. The rest of the shitty stuff, well…fuck you, 2016.
I’m a little teary-eyed as I contemplate John Glenn’s passing. Last of the Mercury astronauts. A hero of my youth. And a truly great American who served his country in so many ways. I thought one day he even might be president of the United States. Condolences to the Glenn family and his many friends and supporters in Ohio, throughout the country and around the world.
Godspeed John Glenn.
I hesitate to speculate what great soul 2016 is holding until the last few day of the year to snatch. I am glad that the Pope and the Dali Lama seem to be in good health.
Terrible to hear that Aldin is sick as well. Best wishes, Buzz.
@Bailey: That fellow is demented — carrying a Bible around for Aldrin to swear on that he walked on the moon and asking whether he had repented his lies! All I ask of cranks is that they be harmless and unintrusive. Is that too much?
@Comrade Scrutinizer: Dude. It’s coming. Buckle up. Also – I live on this planet too.
O/T Tina Fey will make your day better. Really.
The Space Shuttle flight was entirely a stunt about giving a perk to a very supportive Senator who’d also been an astronaut (despite any hand-waving about scientific value), but I loved it anyway and loved even more that Glenn wanted to go back to space at his age.
Lest we forget, Glenn was in the same Marine fighter plane squadron as Ted Williams during the Korean War (and they had a mutual admiration society – Glenn said after Williams died that he might have hit .400 as a baseball player, but he hit 1.000 as a Marine). Think about that convergence.
(And I should not neglect to mention the one millionth example of Boston sports reporting myopia: The headline at the New England Sports Network page about Glenn’s death is, I kid you not: “John Glenn, American Hero Who Served with Ted Williams, Dies at Age 95.”)
Adam L Silverman
@Mary G: The American Speech, Hearing, and Language Association – the professional organization for Speech Language Pathologists – has an Annie Glenn award.
I’m not optimistic about 2017 but I’m determined to fight the bastards.
Of course, the process that restricted the astronaut candidate pool began before Glenn.
This stupidly excluded women aviators who otherwise had the right stuff. A program that put women through the same training process proved it, even though the results were ignored for years.
It’s sad how sheer blindness led people to need to see a manly man as the sole model for an astronaut. It’s so great that those scales have fallen from our eyes today, and Americans would never, say, think that a bonehead fraud of a business tycoon would make a better president than a woman with all the right stuff.
That said, Glenn and his fellow astronauts were indeed the Magnificent Seven.
@napoleon: Oh, that is so sweet.
I get doubly teary-eyed simply for looking at things like what John Glenn was a part of and remembering just what a short time ago we were still a country that could do this.
Imagine somebody today proposing something on the scale of the space program, or the interstate highway system, or the Marshall Plan, or the World War Two war effort, or the electrification of the rural South. Because I can’t. “Conventional wisdom,” the kind formed in the post-Reagan era, would claim that accomplishing that was simply impossible. Then, it would claim that even if it were hypothetically possible, it would be impossible for the Bloated and Inefficient and Bureaucratic federal government to do it. And then, it could that even if the federal government could hypothetically do it, to do it would be an unprecedented attack on the constitutional rights of perennially butthurt assholes who just want to watch the world burn.
(This despite the fact that even the major scientific/technological advancement our age is known for, the Internet, is also a U.S. government achievement, made possible because the DOD invested in research that the private sector said was impossible and would never yield any fruit).
Reports are that Aldrin is on the mend. Fingers crossed.
Also, he’s being treated by . . . wait for it . . . Dr. David Bowie.
You really can’t make this stuff up.
Check ignition and may God’s love be with you…
@Adam L Silverman: Oh…that is sweet, too. Love it that there’s an “Annie” award out there.
That NESN headline is hilarious. I’ve forwarded it to my Boston FB friends (avid, if not rabid, Red Sox fans all).
Gin & Tonic
@randy khan: I always loved the iconic “Hub Man Killed in Blast” for the Boston headline the day after NYC was leveled in a nuclear explosion.
One can only hope that Dr. Bowie is a surgeon.
@SiubhanDuinne: True story. One of the bedrooms in my new house has its ceiling painted red, because Red Sox.
Although I’m a lower-case “a” agnotheist, I love the expression “Rest in Peace and Rise in Glory.” I don’t use it often because it conveys a religious belief that I don’t subscribe to. But in any case, for John Glenn, he did the “Rise in Glory” bit almost 55 years ago, so this is like another return trip for him :-)
Adam L Silverman
@Miss Bianca: The things you learn when your Mom is an SLP who did her degree and training at The OSU.
The Red Sox are my top favorite American League team.
I wish you would post photos of your new house, especially as you and Husband Kitteh make it your own. I’ll bet Anne Laurie would be glad to put up pictures on a garden-light Sunday morning.
@Bailey: who knew that all the right stuff was sockng RW X-ian nut jobs in the kisser?
O/T but I think John Glenn would approve. My action item of the day: Give Five Minutes to Block Breitbart’s AdSense Revenue
The writer got replies from three different places!
Hitting them in the pocketbook feels good!
Mike in NC
Farewell to a true patriot; won’t be seeing many heroes coming out of the Trump Crime Cartel.
73 years of marriage?
the Conster, la Citoyenne
The Mercury Seven was a bit like a bunch of Wile E Coyotes riding an Acme rocket around the Earth. With better planning – of course – but a person had to be a bit, uh, crazy brave to do what they did.
@Adam L Silverman: your mom is a SLP? IMPRESSED.
That’s one of the careers I seriously considered going back to school for, because I became so fascinated by the connections between speech-language difficulties and learning difficulties and disabilties.
@SiubhanDuinne: Yeah but painting the ceiling red is a bit much, don’t you think?
Okay, about a week ago I stopped making Elder public figure X, be on the lookout jokes.
This year. Wow.
When I worked at Kennedy Space Center I saw the original Redstone that Shepard & Grissom went up in. Now every attempt before Shepard’s ride had blown up but even without that insanity the rocket is tiny. No way a smart person would crawl into that! The rocket that actually had the power to get Glenn into orbit was not much bigger but still when you see what they were working with you understand that those guys were either nuts or brave to a level it is hard to understand.
BTW – there is a “museum” on KSC, I don’t think they have it on the public tour I know they didn’t when I worked there. There is a field with a bunch of old rockets, a V2, A V1, a Nike and several other small rockets. In the center is a small red gantry, maybe 20 feet tall. I found all this by accident when driving around with nothing to do. There was no sign or marker indicating what it was and it is well off the main road down a side road.
On that red gantry was a small brass plaque that simple said “From this place on May 5th, 1961 Alan B. Shepard became the first American in space”. Talk about underselling
I guess it depends on whether you ever want to sleep again :-)
Universal health care could have been on that scale, but oh no, first it was all watered down and what remained was all “repeal and replace.”
Adam L Silverman
@Miss Bianca: She is indeed. And has been since 1968.
Adam L Silverman
@efgoldman: or a bordello
Does anyone remember when SNL did the “Long Island Lolita” (Amy Fisher) story as Masterpiece Theater? It was about the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. I’ve been devouring funny videos to try to keep from falling irrevocably into despair. I just looked for it on YouTube and didn’t find it.
YESSSSSSSSSS! As a rule I will go out of my way to avoid seeing violence, but that was very satisfying.
Oh, that’s too bad. Yes, it was funnier than Bass-O-Matic.
@Adam L Silverman: that is just so cool. so, she is still working?
Good time to check out, John. Godspeed. Ad astra per arda.
I refuse to use the name “John Glenn. And the name Donald Trump, in the same sentence.
One of them is a genuine brave American hero with personal modesty, the kind of person we all could admire and be proud of if they had become President, the other is a lying narcissistic braggart bully who is a legend in his own mind who we are deservedly ashamed of, but unfortunately did become President.
There aren’t enough of the first kind around in this country, and way too many of the second kind. And we just lost one of the first kind.
Adam L Silverman
@Miss Bianca: Yes. You can have her swallow study kit when you take it from her cold dead hands…
@napoleon: @Lizzy L: “Tell my wife I love her very much,” “She knows.”
@randy khan: and Glenn invited Ted Williams to that space shuttle launch.
Couldn’t find a video, but it’s from the show of January 9, 1993, if that helps for further searching.
Never met the man but Original 7 astronaut Wally Schirra grew up in the same town that I did in Bergen County, New Jersey. His childhood home was just two doors down from my house. He went to the same elementary school and was a member of the same Boy Scout troop albeit thirty years earlier, back when the entire country had heroes in common. Today, not so much…
On another board, work related (former work in my case), one of the posters said he grew up in Cocoa Beach and saw all six Mercury launches from his front yard as a little kid. Pretty great.
My first Hero. I was 5 when he first orbited.
@Mary G: There’s a link in that article to hundreds of companies who are blocking their ads from Breitbart. Great to see people taking action against this administration and its minions.
Thanks! I had no idea it was that long ago. But it has Chris Rock playing Mrs. Buttafuoco at one point and it’s funny as hell. I think the concept was, they played the Amy Fisher story three different ways — I remember Masterpiece Theater, but don’t remember what the other ones were, although certainly Chris Rock wasn’t in the Masterpiece Theater variant.
It was with Danny DeVito — the Masterpiece Theater version was House of Buttafuoco, but the one with Chris Rock was Amy Fisher: One Messed-Up Bitch. I think they interspersed them throughout the program.
Chris Rock and Ellen Cleghorne were in the version done by BET.
There is an NBC app you can download that lets you see full episodes of SNL, but I don’t know if it goes back that far. I did some more searching and found a few sketches from that show, but not the one you want.
To Infinity And Beyond.
My mom loved everything about the Right Stuff. She collected newspaper articles about the space race,the NASA space patches, and many more. She was thrilled to see sci-fi become fact. John Glenn was one of her heroes.
I remember meeting the Glenns when I was a high school senior back in 1971. That was after John Glenn was out of the military and before he was elected to the senate. He was the chair of an Ohio commission on environmental policy. The high school debate topic that year involved pollution control, and he agreed to meet with some debaters. No doubt we kids made a remarkable contribution to his understanding of the subject. I recall clearly the difficulty Annie Glenn had with her stutter and was surprised years later when she became a polished speaker.
This was all inspired by reading that the show Mozart in the Jungle commissioned Nico Muhly to write an Amy Fisher aria for their diva.
In case you haven’t seen it, here’s a nice remembrance of John Glenn by his friend and fellow Ohioan, columnist Connie Schultz.
I met the Glenns on Election Day night in Cincinnati in 1970. I was a student volunteer for the John Gilligan for Governor campaign and a bunch of us had driven down from Toledo. We were all at this big hotel downtown and Col. Glenn invited some of us into his suite to watch the returns. He couldn’t have been nicer, but I spent a lot of time talking to Mrs. Glenn. She was utterly charming and down-to-earth, but I could tell that she adored her husband; she kept saying that he was going to run again and WIN! And he did.
You’re from Toledo? Me too. Whitmer ’71. We were just back there knocking on doors for Hillary and we’ll be there again for Hanukkah.
@Adam L Silverman: I’m really glad I was done swallowing myself when I read that!
I lived in Orlando for a bit in college and went to the beach to watch Space Shuttle Atlantis go up. It’s one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen.
J R in WV
What a great and long life Senator Glenn lived. Amazing.
@efgoldman: It was indeed, the red room of doom. I am going to repaint it.
A marvelous man who lived a marvelous life
another childhood hero, and another Ohio flight pioneer gone. :(
@JMG: I grew up in Florida in the sixties, and we used to watch the mercury launches on tv in class, and then rush outside to the playground to watch the rocket go by, and the boosters drop off one by one. Very cool.
I know one of Sherrod Brown’s relatives, and when I talked to her about Glenn today, she told a similar story about how gracious he and his wife were.
Nice! I expect there will be quite a few similar remembrances over the next several days. He always came across as just really nice and decent.
He coulda been a Canadian.
Are you Ouroboros?
@SiubhanDuinne: No, gesundheit!
Should have been a comma in there, I s’pose: “swallowing, myself” v. “swallowing myself”.
Live by the grammar Nazi sword, die by the grammar Nazi sword…
@SiubhanDuinne: Well played.
Once I got very lucky and was invited for pizza at the home of one of the Gemini-Apoollo pilots. He was in his 70s but still piloted a jet himself when he went to DC to ask for more support for the space program. He was funny. He said one of the hard things about being in space was he was always losing things. He’d set down a tool while he was fixing something, and even though the capsule was small it was quite hard to find things once they had floated off.
Was walking south on Broadway last night, noted that he and the Discovery crew were in the last ‘ticker-tape-parade’ not held for a sports star or team. (There are letters embedded in the sidewalk, commemorating them all. Just don’t cause collisions while looking down.) (Note that he did not get one for earlier space feats.)
(For trivia question of day, who was the last non-American (not counting sport players) to get one ? )
And now he belongs to the stars. Ave atque vale!
@napoleon: It was Aldrin.
Incredible. RIP Senator Astronaut Glenn.
@PST: MVCDS Class of ’71. Haven’t been back since my parents moved from Perrysburg to Cincinnati in 2013. I used to knock on doors, too, all the way with LBJ, then Humphrey/Muskie and finally Jack Gilligan before I went off to college.
@Mustang Bobby: I realize this is a dead thread, but I get a kick out of finding another Toledo 1971 graduate here. My folks moved away while I was in college — it was the only way to get my brother out of the house — but I married a girl from the old neighborhood last summer and go back from time to time to visit her mother.
RIP, fellow Muskingum alum.