• I was born in Los Angeles, California, in 1911.
  • Inspired by science fiction, I developed during my childhood an interest in rocketry and in 1928 began amateur rocket experiments.
  • In 1934 I united with two others to form the GALCIT Rocket Research Group, based out of Caltech. In 1943 this became the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which developed into a centre for missile research and early space experiments.
  • In 1952 I died in suspicious circumstances, aged a mere 37, six years before JPL became part of the newly established National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
  • Despite never seeing the formation of NASA, my founding of the JPL and my advocacy of space exploration has resulted in me being considered one of the most important figures in the history of U.S. space travel.

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