Virgil “Gus” Grissom was born on this date in 1926. Grissom was the second American in space, a July 1961 suborbital flight that followed Alan Shepard’s similar flight and preceded John Glenn’s orbiting the earth in 1962. Grissom’s spacecraft sank upon landing, but after years of analysis, experts conceded it had not been due to any action or failure on Grissom’s part. Grissom flew in the first manned Gemini flight in 1965 — he was the first American to fly into space twice. He named the craft Molly Brown (as in unsinkable). When NASA objected, he renamed it Titanic. NASA relented but never used the name and stopped naming spacecraft for a time. Grissom died in the Apollo I fire in 1967.