Saturday, October 12, 2013

Scott Carpenter 1925-2013

"When I reached orbit, the first thing that impressed me was the silence."

It just reached me today that Scott Carpenter, one of the original Mercury astronauts, died on Thursday of complications from a recent stroke. That leaves only John Glenn of the original seven astronauts, the others having preceded him in death. Carpenter was the one who wish Glenn "godspeed" before the launch of the Friendship 7. (He's also reported, unofficially, to have said "Remember, John, this was built by the low bidder.")

Carpenter commanded the Aurora 7, and was the second American to orbit the Earth (and the fourth American in space). He was the subject of some controversy surrounding the problematic reentry of Aurora; after that, he took a leave from NASA to work on the SEALAB project, but he sustained an injury to his left arm in a motorcycle accident and was grounded. He never flew in space again, and resigned from NASA in 1967.

These guys are some of my heroes. I wanted to do what they did for a long time as a kid. I may never have that kind of bravery, but these men continue to inspire me today.

Thank you, Scott, for what you did. Thank all seven of you.

1 comment:

Kal said...

I am a freak for all things about the Mercury Program so I appreciate your eulogy to a brave man. One of seven. Spam in a can. I love the Right Stuff. I need to watch that again.