Yes, America still has heroes. Although resisted by John Glenn, fame follows the astronaut who became the first American to orbit the earth in 1962. Glenn, who more recently captivated and inspired Americans of all ages with his return to space at age 77, chronicles for the first time his amazing life on land and in orbit in John Glenn: A Memoir (Bantam), written with Nick Taylor.
Glenn’s book provides an insider’s account of the pioneering days of NASA and his historic selection to pilot the Friendship 7 spacecraft. Retiring from the Marines in 1965 after 23 illustrious years, he ran for the U.S. Senate, at the encouragement of Robert Kennedy, where he served for 24 years. From the rigors of training and the dangers of early rocket technology, to working with world leaders, Glenn’s perspective is unique. His adventure continued with his remarkable Discovery mission in 1998, 35 years after the exhilaration of his first journey into space.
Glenn’s lifelong commitment to the service of his country has made this small-town boy from New Concord, Ohio a true American icon. His formative years in a small town, during the Depression of the 1930s, showed him the value of determination, hard work and teamwork. It was also in New Concord where he met Annie Castor, when both were still toddlers. He has shared with her a partnership in marriage, for more than 50 years, each supporting the other through their ups and downs.
John Glenn was interviewed at Kentucky Author Forum by Lou Dobbs, founder of CNN Financial News and former executive vice-president of CNN. Dobbs left CNN to become the chairman and CEO of space.com, considered the definitive site on the web devoted to space and space-related content. He is currently a CNN anchor and managing editor of “Lou Dobbs Tonight”.