Astronaut John Glenn, 93, weathers health difficulties

Astronaut John Glenn, 93, weathers health difficulties

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Former astronaut and U.S. Sen. John Glenn said Thursday that he's come through a year of health difficulties.

Glenn, who is the first American to orbit the Earth, appeared with his wife, Annie, at a Statehouse news conference in Ohio. Now 93, he said he suffered a small stroke after heart-valve replacement surgery last year.

Glenn said he has about half his eyesight now as a result of some macular degeneration and has lost some of his hearing. He might have a corrective operation on his eyes soon, he said.

"It hasn't been a good year, so we're hoping things pick up," Glenn said.

Glenn can no longer drive or read so his wife, who is 95, reads to him now.

"Annie was a severe stutterer until she was in her 60s and got some therapy that corrected that, so I used to have to read to her," Glenn said.

"So now I can read to him," his wife chimed in. "It's wonderful. It worked out."

"It's not so wonderful to me," Glenn quipped, laughing.

The Glenns were at the Statehouse to announce Ohio's first-in-the-nation participation in an interactive civics education website. It will be administered by the John Glenn College of Public Affairs at Ohio State University.

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