Sunday, January 7, 2018

It Was Not Supposed to End Like This

Another astronaut gone.

John Young, who flew in space six times, walked on the moon, and commanded the first space shuttle, is dead at the age of 87.  He had a 42 year career with NASA.

The original space explorers are almost gone.  It's time for me to write another tribute.

Young originally flew in the third Gemini flight, and smuggled a corned beef sandwich onboard. (NASA was not amused.)

He helped with the rescue of Apollo 13, the disabled spacecraft that was able to return to earth 

He almost became the first man to walk on the moon twice.

Here was a tribute I wrote in December, 2016 when famed astronaut John Glenn died.

We study the first words spoken on the moon, by astronaut Neil Armstrong.  But how many of us remember the last words spoken on the moon?  Quoting:

"...America's challenge of today has forged man's destiny of tomorrow," astronaut Gene Cernan said. "And, as we leave the Moon at Taurus- Littrow, we leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind. Godspeed the crew of Apollo 17."

Except that we never did return.  And, of the twelve men who walked on the moon, only five are left now.  Cernan died in January 2017.  Now, Young has joined him.

Thinking of Cernan's quote, peace and hope seem to be in short supply nowadays.

Few of us could have dreamed of what happened to the space program.  Americans can't even get into space on their own anymore.  We have to pay the Russians, although that may not be true for much longer.

It wasn't supposed to end like this.

The last of the original seven astronauts gone.  Last year, the last man to walk on the moon.  Now, still another pioneer.   Five left to go.  The youngest of them is 82.


Day 7 of the Ultimate Blog Challenge. #blogboost


  1. It’s a shame that more about these men, who they were/are isn’t taught. Thank you for writing this.

  2. I was a small child when it happened. It was all very exciting, like a constant buzz in the air. So many possibilities... And now nothing much seems very hopefull. The human species is a very weird one!

  3. Alana,

    So many great men passing. It's sad to hear of such news. Lovely tribute. Thanks for sharing.

  4. I am glad you are giving tribute to some true pioneers in our space exploration. This isn't done enough.

  5. We'll get back to the moon. I'm sure of it. It just might not be in our lifetime...


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