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MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. US astronaut John Glenn who has died at the age of 95 in the United States made a big contribution to the world cosmonautics history, Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos said in a statement on Friday.
"Roscosmos highly values Mr. Glenn’s big contribution to the world history of cosmonautics. We want to express our deep condolences to the relatives, friends and colleagues of this outstanding man - world cosmonautics has sustained a big loss," the statement says.
Glenn was earlier taken to the oncological department of the Ohio State University Medical Center in Columbus.
According to Medical Center spokesman Hank Williams, the astronaut was placed under doctors’ observation about a week ago.
Born in 1921 in the city of Cambridge (the state of Ohio), Glenn was the holder of several space records. In 1962, he was the first US astronaut to make an orbital flight around the Earth aboard the Mercury-Atlas 6 spacecraft. Before him, this was done by Soviet cosmonauts Yuri Gagarin and Herman Titov.
Glenn was a member of the so-called first Seven - a group of US astronauts that flew aboard Mercury one-seat spacecraft. He performed a space flight for the second time aboard the space shuttle orbiter Discovery in 1998 at the age of 77, becoming the oldest man to fly in outer space.
Glenn held the post of a senator from the state of Ohio for more than 20 years. As a member of the Democratic Party, he actively supported incumbent US President Barack Obama and helped him with his presidential campaign. A steel plate in Glenn’s honor is installed in the US city of Houston (the state of Texas), the place of the NASA first headquarters. It is situated next to the statue of Yuri Gagarin.