Farewell to Mathematician Katherine Johnson, Crucial “Hidden Figure” at NASA in the ’60s Space Race

From her time as a childhood math prodigy in West Virginia to her crucial role as a “computer” at NASA, where her calculations helped lead astronauts into orbit and then the moon, black mathematician Katherine Johnson was a pioneering figure in spaceflight. Johnson’s work was critical to NASA’s earlier successes—especially during the space race—but they wouldn’t get mainstream recognition until President Barack Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015. Johnson’s story was then chronicled in the film Hidden Figures two years later. Johnson has passed away at age 101. Read more about her the Washington Post.