A Passion For Flying
When he was just seven years old, Gordon Cooper’s father, an Army colonel from Oklahoma, allowed his son to ride his airplane with him. He even let the child take the controls for a little bit. This simple experience is what sparked Cooper’s interest in flying. He absolutely loved anything that had to do with it. He dreamed of becoming a pilot one day.
Cooper served in the Marines and the Air Force before he turned 32 and worked as a test pilot on Edwards Air Force Base. That’s where he recommended industry-altering improvements to the F-108B Delta Dart jet fighter. Then, he got an incredible offer. In 1959, NASA invited Cooper to Washington DC.