Glenn became a national hero as the first American to orbit the Earth on a five-hour solo mission in 1962. He would later become the oldest person to go into space when he boarded the space shuttle Discovery at the ripe old age of 77 in 1998. His second trip was designed to study the effects of space travel on the elderly.
Glenn was the last surviving member of the Mercury 7, the first manned spaceflight by the United States, which included fellow astronauts Alan Shepard, Gordo Cooper and Gus Grissom. Their experiences were the base for the 1983 film The Right Stuff. Westworld's Ed Harris played Glenn in the movie. In ABC's The Astronaut Wives' Club, he was played by Sam Reid. Glenn will next be portrayed in the upcoming film Hidden Figures.
Glenn was also important when he was Earth-bound. The former war hero also served as a senator for the state of Ohio for more than 24 years.
Glenn is survived by his wife, two children and two grandchildren.