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Kevork Djansezian, Associated Press
FILE - Former Polish president and Nobel Peace Prize winner Lech Walesa, center front, and US astronaut John Glenn, right front, lead other flag bearers carrying the Olympic flag as it enters the Rice-Eccles Olympic stadium during the opening ceremonies of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City Friday, Feb. 8, 2002. Other are from front left: Walesa, Japan's ski jumper Kazuyoshi Funaki, French downhill skier Jean-Claude Killy, and environmentalist Jean-Michel Cousteau. From the back right: Glenn, Nobel Peace Prize winner Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Australian Olympic gold medalist Cathy Freeman, and filmmaker Steven Spielberg. Glenn, who later spent 24 years representing Ohio in the Senate, has died at 95.

Former astronaut and U.S. Sen. John Glenn has died in Ohio. He was 95.

Glenn became a national hero in 1962 when he became the first American to orbit the Earth.

Hank Wilson with the John Glenn School of Public Affairs says Glenn died Thursday afternoon at the James Cancer Hospital in Columbus.

Glenn was the third U.S. astronaut in space and the first of them to get into orbit. He circled the Earth three times. The Soviet Union had put a man into orbit a year earlier in 1961.

Glenn then spent 24 years as a Democrat from Ohio in the Senate and briefly made a run for president in 1984. He returned to space in 1998, at age 77, aboard space shuttle Discovery.

He was the last survivor of the original Mercury 7 astronauts.