Hidden Figures is a new film based on the book of the same name by Margot Lee Shetterly. The film and movie is the story of the three African-American mathematicians whose knowledge helped John Glenn to orbit the Earth. Two of the three phenomenal women were members of the AME Church, one was a graduate of Wilberforce University and two of them grew up in the 3rd District.
Mary Jackson, Dorothy Vaughan and Katherine Johnson story is being told in movie theaters NOW. They were among the first group of African-Americans to be employed as mathematicians at NASA.
Before the development of Apple or Microsoft computers, they were known as the “human computers” of the space program.
Mary Winston Jackson was born in Hampton, VA and graduated from Hampton University. She worked for 34 years at NASA Langley Research Center as an Aeronautical Engineer. She was a Girl Scout leader and a member of Bethel AME Church in Newport News, VA. She died February 2005.
Dorothy Vaughan, born in Kansas City, Mo but grew up in Morgantown, WVA. She was a 1929 graduate of Wilberforce University and a member of St. Paul AME Church in Newport News, VA. She was an active member of the WMS and dedicated her life to helping others. She died November 2008.
Katherine Johnson was born in White Sulphur Springs, WVA. She is a 1937 graduate of West Virginia State College. She retired from NASA in 1986 after helping John Glenn to orbit the earth and other astronauts to land on the moon. Mrs. Johnson was awarded the Presidential Medal of Honor in 2015 by President Barack Obama. Stephanie Young, daughter of Bishop and Mrs. Young had the honor of meeting her at the White House.
Hidden Figures starring Taraji P. Henson as Katherine Johnson, Octavia Spencer as Dorothy Vaughn and Janelle Monae as Mary Jackson, is a must see movie for all.