Francis Gary Powers—a civilian pilot from Pound, Va., flying for the Central Intelligence Agency—was unable to activate the self-destruct mechanism, and the plane crashed largely intact. Because the U-2 was specifically designed for covert surveillance, Powers was tried and convicted as a spy and sentenced to ten years imprisonment. Upon his return to the U.S. in 1962, Powers was cold-shouldered by the CIA for having failed to destroy the plane or kill himself, but a Senate committee fully exonerated him. Powers, who died in 1977, was posthumously awarded the POW Medal, the National Defense Medal, and the CIA Director’s Medal for his service and for never disclosing any classified information. The exhibition, Cold War Crisis: The U-2 Incident, about Powers’s life and service was organized by The Cold War Museum, founded by Powers’s son Francis Gary Powers, Jr. It is on display at the Virginia Historical Society until May 30, 2010.