At 9:47 on the morning of February 20, 1962, Lt. Colonel John "Shorty" Power delivered the message that millions of Americans had waited four year to hear: "Glenn reports all spacecraft system go! Mercury Control is go!" A little over three hours later Friendship 7 landed in the Atlantic Ocean. From the White House Rose Garden, President John F. Kennedy sent congratulations to the astronaut and "all of those who participated with Colonel Glenn at Canaveral. We have a long way to go in this space race," Kennedy declared, "but this is the new ocean, and I believe the United States must sail on it and be in a position second to none."2 In Melbourne, Jerry Keuper, missile man and president of fledgling Brevard Engineering College (BEC), linked Colonel John Glenn's mission with BEC's success. "The first practical space shot," Keuper explained, "has now proved it can be done and done well. Our push for a progressive college will be coupled with a re-dedication of purpose to our college." The launch, Keuper declared in Kennedy-esque language, had "revitalized our people into new heights of action and renewed vigor to make the college world renowned."
"Space University: Lift-Off of Florida Institute of Technology,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 79:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol79/iss1/5