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  • mathematician

  • and Greenbrier

  • County native,

  • Katherine

  • Johnson, passes

  • away.

  • 59 News Reporter

  • Claudia Sessa

  • spoke with

  • members of the

  • White Sulphur

  • Springs

  • community about

  • the impact she

  • made.

  • VO

  • Katherine

  • Coleman Johnson

  • made history when

  • she became a

  • ground-breaking

  • mathematician for

  • NASA.

  • Johnson was

  • essential to NASA

  • during the Space

  • Race against the

  • Soviet Union --

  • prompting a

  • character in the

  • movie "Hidden

  • Figures" which

  • portrayed her and

  • other black women

  • who were

  • instrumental in this

  • mission.

  • But -- what many

  • people don't know

  • she was from a

  • small city right

  • here in southern

  • West Virginia.

  • Katherine

  • Johnson was born

  • in White Sulphur

  • Springs in 1918.

  • LLOYD

  • HAYNES/CITY

  • MANAGER,

  • WHITE SULPHUR

  • SPRINGS:

  • "when I was mayor

  • is when I actually

  • found out about

  • Mrs. Johnsons

  • accomplishments

  • and I had no idea

  • she was a lady

  • that came from

  • White Sulphur

  • Springs."

  • VO

  • According to

  • Johnson's NASA

  • profile, she

  • skipped several

  • grades due to her

  • QUOTE: "intense

  • curiosity and

  • brilliance with

  • numbers."

  • In fact, her profile

  • states she

  • attended the

  • historically black

  • West Virginia

  • State College at

  • age 13.

  • BRUCE

  • BOWLING/MAYO

  • R, WHITE

  • SULPHUR

  • SPRINGS:

  • "she was too

  • smart for us, that's

  • for sure. It's a real

  • sense of pride for

  • us. We named the

  • Library after her

  • and we're very

  • proud to say she

  • grew up here."

  • VO

  • Johnson was

  • integral when it

  • came to several

  • NASA projects --

  • including Alan

  • Shepard's May

  • 1961 mission --

  • Freedom 7.

  • America's first

  • human

  • spaceflight.

  • Johnson provided

  • trajectory analysis

  • for the mission.

  • In 2015, President

  • Barack Obama

  • awarded her the

  • Presidental Medal

  • of Freedom -- the

  • highest civilian

  • honor in America.

  • LLOYD

  • HAYNES/CITY

  • MANAGER,

  • WHITE SULPHUR

  • SPRINGS:

  • "and because of

  • her activity, she

  • was a good role

  • model for black,

  • white, and all in

  • between, people

  • throughout the

  • entire world."

  • VO

  • Johnson passed

  • away on February

  • 24, 2020 at 101

  • years old.

  • Reporting in

  • Greenbrier

  • County, Claudia

  • Sessa, 59 News.

  • Riley

  • Still to come...

  • We'll see how the

  • Mountaineers are

  • doing on the court

  • this year.

  • That's coming up

  • next in your WVI

  • Report.

mathematician

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Members of White Sulphur Springs community remember Katherine Johnson

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/02/25
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