ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Fifty years ago, John Glenn became a national hero and a household name after he became the first American to orbit the earth.
A local company, Carleton Technologies, now called Cobham in Orchard Park had a major part in the mission's success.
The company invented the oxygen regulator that allowed Glenn to breathe in space.
Every U-S astronaut since then has taken every breath using Cobham's equipment.
The regulator is the genesis of the company that still employs nearly three hundred people in Western New York.
NASA sent the actual regulator and mask that Glenn used on his mission back to the company and its now proudly on display in the lobby in Orchard Park. The company employs nearly three hundred people locally.