Astronaut John Glenn was one of the Mercury Seven, the first Americans trained for spaceflight. Before Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth in his Friendship 7 mission on February 20, 1962, he went through a lot of training.
50 years ago, John Glenn was hurled from the planet to become the fifth human being and third American in outer space. More importantly, he was the first American to orbit the Earth.
In 1962, space travel wasn't what you'd call an "exact" science. NASA was only a few years old and nobody really knew how humans would cope outside the atmosphere. Now, 50 years after his historic orbit, John Glenn recalls what his doctors thought would happen in zero gravity.
The six haggard dudes you see here aren't extras from Lawrence of Arabia, but intrepid, tough as hell astronauts from the Mercury 6 program. The 1960s squad attended survival training school in Nevada to prepare for a remote crash landing.