Virgil “Gus” Grissom (1926-1967)
Grissom Elementary opened in 1969, named after American astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom. Grissom was an Air Force pilot and Lieutenant Colonel who flew 100 missions during the Korean Conflict. He earned two bachelor’s degrees. Grissom piloted the second Project Mercury mission, America’s second manned spacecraft. He also piloted the Gemini 3, which made him the first American astronaut to fly into space twice.
Grissom then became the Command Pilot for Apollo 1, the first of the manned Apollo missions. The command module caught fire during a pre-flight test, and all three men on board, including Grissom, were killed. He left his wife Betty and his sons Scott and Mark. Among his many honors, Grissom was awarded the Master Astronaut badge, the Distinguished Flying Cross, and the Distinguished Service Medal.
The value that Col. Grissom placed on education, physical development, service, character, and family, serve as a model from which all of us can learn.
Grissom Elementary School
6646 S. 73 E. Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74133