Hero US astronaut John Glenn dies

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Hero US astronaut John Glenn dies

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He will go down in history as one of the 20th century’s greatest explorers. John Glenn – the first American to orbit Earth – has died, aged 95.

He was the last surviving member of the original seven Mercury astronauts.

Glenn circled the world in February 1962, in the Friendship 7 capsule. He famously remarked “that view is tremendous.”

After splashdown and recovery in the Atlantic, Glenn was treated as a hero, addressing a joint session of Congress and being feted in a New York ticker-tape parade.

He was credited with reviving US pride after the Soviet Union’s domination of manned space exploration.

Former fighter pilot Glenn later became a US senator, but he refused to hang up his space suit.

In 1998, at the age of 77, Glenn became the oldest man to travel to space – blasting off aboard the shuttle Discovery.

He died at the James Cancer Hospital at Ohio State University, according to a spokesman.