Katherine Johnson Wiki
Katherine Johnson (née Coleman; August 26, 1918 – February 24, 2020), also known as Katherine Goble, was an American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and the subsequent U.S. crewed spaceflights. During her 35-year career at NASA and its predecessor, she earned a reputation for mastering complex manual calculations and helped pioneer the use of computers to perform the tasks. The space agency noted her “historical role as one of the first African-American women to work as a NASA scientist”.
Katherine Johnson Age
She was 101 years old.
Katherine Johnson Life And Education
Katherine Johnson (née Creola Katherine Coleman) was born on August 26, 1918 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, to Joylette and Joshua Coleman, She was the youngest of four children. Her mother was a teacher and her father was a lumberman, farmer, and handyman, and worked at the Greenbrier Hotel.
Johnson showed strong mathematical abilities from an early age. Because Greenbrier County did not offer public schooling for African-American students past the eighth grade, the Colemans arranged for their children to attend high school in Institute, West Virginia. This school was on the campus of West Virginia State College (WVSC, now West Virginia State University). Johnson was enrolled when she was only ten years old. The family split their time between Institute during the school year and White Sulphur Springs in the summer.
After graduating from high school at 14, Johnson enrolled at West Virginia State, a historically black college. As a student, she took every math course offered by the college. Multiple professors mentored her, including the chemist and mathematician Angie Turner King, who had mentored Johnson throughout high school, and W. W. Schieffelin Claytor, the third African-American to receive a PhD in mathematics. Claytor added new mathematics courses just for Katherine. She graduated summa cum laude in 1937, with degrees in mathematics and French, at age 18. She took on a teaching job at a black public school in Marion, Virginia.
Katherine Johnson Death
Katherine Johnson, a pioneering American icon featured in the movie “Hidden Figures,” has died at age 101, NASA announced Monday.
“Our @NASA family is sad to learn the news that Katherine Johnson passed away this morning at 101 years old,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine tweeted Monday morning. “She was an American hero and her pioneering legacy will never be forgotten.”
The groundbreaking African American mathematician worked on complex space missions as a “human computer” for NASA Langley in Hampton, including calculating the trajectories for Alan Shepard’s history-making journey into space and giving the “go-ahead” for John Glenn’s historic mission into orbit.