Born in 1929 in Leigh-on-Sea, England.
John Hodge was one of the original NASA flight directors, along with Gene Kranz and Chris Kraft. He joined the Space Task Group in 1959, almost by accident. Along with several other British aeronautical engineers, he had moved to in 1952 to Canada to work on an advanced jet fighter, the Avro Arrow. The Canadians suddenly canceled the project and the engineers were left jobless. On hearing about this pool of talent Charles Donlan hired 25 of them into NASA, including Hodges, who went to work for Chris Kraft.
Hodges is best known for his handling of the Gemini VIII emergency, NASA's first serious manned space emergency. Neil Armstrong and David Scott had succesfully docked with an Agena test vehicle. A stuck thruster put their Gemini project capsule into a spin, which only worsened when they detached themselves from the Agena. They regained control by dipping into their re-entry control propellant and the mission was terminated early.
Hodge was a flight controller during many of the Gemini project and Apollo project missions. 1982 he became director of NASA's Space Station Task Force and Associate Administrator for Space Stations Operations in 1986. He retired soon after and went into private industry.