Jack Black’s mother made a notable contribution to the rescue of the Apollo 13 astronauts

A talented individual, Jack Black is known for his dynamic performances in numerous popular films and music. His charismatic presence and versatile acting skills have made him a household name. However, it seems that greatness runs in Black’s family as his mother was a talented woman. Judith Love Cohen had many facets to her personality. I have danced with the New York Metropolitan Opera Ballet Company, written books for children and, most importantly, played a crucial role in the space program, according to USA Today. A few years ago, a post got a lot of attention on Facebook detailing how Cohen was responsible for saving the lives of the Apollo 13 astronauts when disaster struck.

Image source: Jack Black poses during the
Image Source: Jack Black poses at the Australian premiere of “Kung Fu Panda 4” on March 16, 2024 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Don Arnold/WireImage)

There was also a viral Reddit post shared by u/holyfruits that talked about how Cohen played a key role in the creation of the Abort-Guidance System that helped bring the Apollo 13 astronauts back home. The woman was so dedicated to her work that she wouldn’t take a day off, even when she was in labor. Cohen made a printout of a problem she was trying to solve at work and took it to the hospital. Some time later, Cohen called her boss to tell him that she had found a solution and was proceeding to give birth to Jack Black. While some may dismiss this account as a way for celebrities to create publicity for themselves, this information about Black’s mother is true.

Image source: Reddit |  u/hollywoodhank
Image source: Reddit | u/hollywoodhank
Image source: Reddit |  u/italian_stonks
Image source: Reddit | u/italian_stonks

Black’s half-brother Niel Siegel revealed in a heartfelt memorial post about their amazing mother that the stories about Cohen were all true, according to USC Viterbi. He also wrote, “Her engineering career included roles on the teams that created the guidance computer for the Minuteman rocket, the Abort-Guidance System in the Lunar Excursion Module for the Apollo space program, the ground system for the tracking data, and the relay system. Satellite (recently retired after nearly 40 years of operations in orbit!) among other things.” Her obituary in The Los Angeles Times stated that she had earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of South California. Cohen died on 25 July 2016, after being diagnosed with cancer, Siegel wrote in her memory that she was just “a few weeks shy of her 83rd birthday.”

Although Cohen had an impressive resume, she considered her work on the Apollo program the most pivotal role of her entire career. The remarkable woman was present as the returning astronauts thanked members of the TRW facility on Redondo Beach. Black himself shared a photo of his mother with the Pioneer spacecraft on Instagram in 2019 and wrote in the caption about all the roles she played in her life. Cohen spent the last few years of her engineering work in systems engineering at the Hubble Space Telescope facility. Most people will also be intrigued to know that she has consistently advocated for female employees to receive better treatment in the workplace.