Devote Yourself To Something Bigger, No Matter Your Age

Almost four decades after he became the first American to orbit the Earth, Senator John Glenn, Jr., then age 77, was launched back into space aboard space shuttle Discovery.

Glenn, who has joked, “There is still no cure for the common birthday,” never let age get in the way of his accomplishments.

With his return to the air in 1998, Glenn became, and still is, the oldest human ever to travel in space. During the nine-day mission, he was part of a study on health problems associated with aging.

When Glenn was a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps, he was among the seven men chosen to become America’s first astronauts. After making history in 1962 as the first American to orbit the earth, Glenn was grounded by the space agency. NASA did not wish to take risks with the popular astronaut and national hero.

The Agency's decision frustrated Glenn.

In 1998, Glenn attracted much media attention with his return to space travel aboard Discovery.

“The happiest and most fulfilled people,” Glenn says, "are those who devoted themselves to something bigger and more profound than merely their own self-interest."