46 Years Ago Today, 5 May 1961

onedomino

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Forty-six years ago today, 5 May 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American to travel into space aboard a Redstone rocket in the Freedom 7 capsule. He was 23 days behind Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space. Shepard was one of 7 men picked for the Mercury Program from 500 applicants. Later, Shepard went to a place that Gagarin wished he could follow. In 1971 Shepard commanded Apollo 14 and walked on the Moon. Shepard died in 1998 at the age of 75.

 

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Forty-six years ago today, 5 May 1961, Alan Shepard became the first American to travel into space aboard a Redstone rocket in the Freedom 7 capsule. He was 23 days behind Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space. Shepard was one of 7 men picked for the Mercury Program from 500 applicants. Later, Shepard went to a place that Gagarin wished he could follow. In 1971 Shepard commanded Apollo 14 and walked on the Moon. Shepard died in 1998 at the age of 75.

I remember it well. I was sick at home in bed and I listened to it on the radio (I was living in the UK). It was my 11th birthday. I was really excited, coming so soon after Yuri Gagarin's launch it was somehow an affirmation of balance in the world. It was an exciting time for a kid who devoured Arthur C. Clarke novels.
 
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onedomino

onedomino

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I remember it well. I was sick at home in bed and I listened to it on the radio (I was living in the UK). It was my 11th birthday. I was really excited, coming so soon after Yuri Gagarin's launch it was somehow an affirmation of balance in the world. It was an exciting time for a kid who devoured Arthur C. Clarke novels.
I was not to be born for almost three years when Gene Cernan became the last human to touch the surface of the Moon, 14 December 1972. Who could have guessed that we would not have returned since? We have lost our way.
 

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I was not to be born for almost three years when Gene Cernan became the last human to touch the surface of the Moon, 14 December 1972. Who could have guessed that we would not have returned since? We have lost our way.
We did indeed. I was lucky. I remember being herded along with my colleagues to see the moon landing, 1969. I was simply stunned.
 

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