Today marks the 50th anniversary of John Glenn’s Friendship 7 flight. While he looked and played the part of the heroic astronaut, he wasn’t NASA’s first choice to make the first flight. How Glenn ended up flying this historic mission is an interesting one; it was more good timing that cemented his place in the history books.
Speaking of John Glenn, here are a few fun facts about the man and his mission. And his spacecraft, Friendship 7 – why was there a 7 on the end? (Left, Glenn relaxes on board recovery carrier the USS Noa after his orbital mission, February 20, 1962.)