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Monday, February 20, 2012
John Glenn: First American to Orbit the earth 50 years ago today
I was 3 months away from being 14 years old then on February 20th 1962 and in 8th grade in Mr. Addison's Science class and he had brought in a black and white TV so we could all watch John Glen on TV in space. It was a very big deal because The Soviets had already gone into orbit above the earth and had sent Sputnik up in October 1957 which scared the hell out of the U.S. and most of the free world. So, we watched John Glen Orbit the earth in School on one of the schools black and white TVs and everyone of the boys in my class wanted to become an astronaut when they grew up after that. It was an amazing time and then only 7 years later when I was 21 in the summer we watched the first Americans on the moon in July 1969. Those were very heady amazing times we lived in. Yes. Viet Nam was a big problem by 1969 and more boys my age were dying there than any other age(50,000 total died and 250,000 wounded). But, the paradox was that we also had men on the moon and the whole world was amazed and and the whole world has looked at Americans differently ever since because of that. No other country on earth has had men on the moon even now. (that we know of publicly)