Tuesday, 28 October 2008
And then men landed on the moon.
A single page from Buzz's flown Apollo 11 Flight Plan; historically one of the most significant documents ever published.
I was fortunate to spend a couple of days in the comapny of Apollo 12 Command Module Pilot Dick Gordon when he visited Pontefract, West Yorkshire in 2011. There could not have been a nicer, more affable man in the astronaut corp. While this flag accompanied his crewmates and best friends to the lunar surface Dick missed his opportunity to match the feat when, as Commander of Apollo 18 his flight was cancelled by the Nixon administration.
As Apollo 12 Lunar Module Pilot Alan Bean travelled with this flag to the lunar surface. While attending an Autographica show he was kind and gracious enough to attest to that fact on the flag itself.
A number of the astronaut corp were famed for their practical jokes or "Gotchas". The "Beep Beep" Apollo 14 back-up crew patch being arguably the most famous. Secreted throughout both spacecraft by the score, even making it onto the modularized cart used to traverse the lunar surface, the patches would float out of every compartment, locker or check-list. The crew of Apollo 14 took the prank in good spirits.....initially. The joke eventually wore thin but then the best "Gotchas" often do!