Thursday, December 8, 2016
Passing of an American Hero
It has been a while since my last post. I have been working on a few quilting projects, but since they are Christmas gifts I haven't wanted to post any photos. The issues that I have have been having with my feet have cramped my style a bit and have put my photography on the back burner, so that also explains my lack of posting. My house is all holly and jolly thanks to my cousin and her little girls who last week came and lugged decorations and other things up from the cellar for me. Since yesterday was an early release day from their school, they came for our monthly "Ladies Lunch" followed by our annual visit to The Christmas Place in Abington. I, for the most part, sat on a convenient bench while the girls each picked out this year's ornaments.
The passing of John Glenn prompted me to write this post. I was in grammar school when he made his historic flight in 1962. Young people today would have no idea of the impact that John Glenn and the other Mercury 7 astronauts had on our country. They were truly American heroes. When I was in college, John Glenn came to our campus as part of the speaker series. I attended most of these events, but I was never as excited as when John Glenn came. Flip ahead twenty to thirty years . . . I was with a group of eighth and ninth grade students on a trip to Washington D.C. and visiting the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum where we saw John Glenn's Mercury 7 space capsule. I remember trying to explain to them what a really big deal that flight had been. We marveled had just how small and improbable that capsule appeared to be. Later that same afternoon or the next day we were at the Capitol listening to the guide talking about the features in the rotunda when a group of men passed through. One of the teacher suddenly remarked, "Oh, my, goodness that's Senator John Glenn!" I think it might even have been me. Senator Glenn turned, flashed a smile, nodded, and without missing a stride kept on moving. One of his aides paused briefly and said the senator would have stopped to greet the students, but he was rushing to cast a vote.
A few years ago, I read a biography of John Glenn. From his early years, to his days as a test pilot always pushing boundaries, to his becoming an astronaut and an American hero, and later a United States senator, he truly had the right stuff. Besides all that, the book showed him to be a very good and decent man. Godspeed, John Glenn.