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University engineering student inspired by astronaut John Glenn

EVERETT, Wash. – Dec. 8, 2016 – Washington State University (WSU) North Puget Sound at Everett mechanical engineering student Mitch Elder, who serves as president of the WSU Everett Mars Rover Team, made the following statement about astronaut and public servant John Glenn:

“John Glenn was one of America’s first space heroes. He will always stand apart as the first and oldest American to orbit Earth.

“I remember photos of the Mercury Seven astronauts and video of Friendship 7 and being so energized by our nation’s trek into space. It was incredible to actually see him go into space in 1998 on a Discovery mission.

“He fully committed and pushed himself to achieve the impossible. That kind of drive motivates me to do better every day.

“He inspired generations of explorers, including me and the engineering students on our Mars Rover Team.

“The space race has reignited in the private sector, and one of their products will even bear his name. His loss will leave one of the largest voids the aerospace community has ever known.”

Elder is a senior mechanical engineering student at Washington State University from Everett. He is the president of the WSU Everett Engineering Club and Mars Rover Team.

Elder operating the Mars rover at the University Rover Challenge in Utah