A Conversation for Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Peer Review: A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 1

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Entry: Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour - A87901284
Author: Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor - U128652

smiley - rose


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 2

SashaQ - happysad - Editor

This is a lovely Entry indeed smiley - rose

You have written it up superbly - gives me shivers reading the terrible details and the way they are counterpointed with people's life outside space travel...

smiley - rose


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 3

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Thanks Sasha, I debated writing this 9 years ago - but I didn't think I could do it justice then. It's a sobering entry. I think about the men and women orbiting the Earth on the ISS, and how fragile life is smiley - brave


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 4

Deek

Astro

Hi GB

An interesting subject. There are a couple of others you may want to consider adding to the list though.

Captain Theodore C Freeman
Selected as an astronaut in 1963. Flying a T-38 Talon and died as a result of a bird strike while on landing approach. Ejected too late for his parachute to deploy.

Major Clifton C Williams Jr
He had been back-up pilot for Gemini 10 and selected as Lunar Module Pilot to Apollo 12. He would have landed on the moon with Pete Conrad if he hadn’t been killed in an air accident. Alan Bean took his place. He was flying a nearly new T-38 Talon, a communications aircraft, when the controls jammed and the aircraft dived into the ground. Although it appears he had sufficient time, he ejected too late.

Major Michael J Adams
Selected as an astronaut but transferred to the X-15 research program. He died on his seventh flight when the aircraft broke up after spinning at more than five times the speed of sound during re-entry.

Major Edward G Givens Jr
Selected as an astronaut in 1966. Selected as support crew for the Apollo 1 crew, and possibly a later command module pilot, he died in an automobile accident.

Re Gemini IX -A.
One small point. NASA never used Roman numerals to identify their flights. The Gemini 9 flight was officially GT-9 and was renumbered after the failure of a target rocket and having to change the object of the mission, not because of the death of the prime crew See and Basset. It became Gemini 9A.


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 5

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Thanks Deke, I'll have a go at updating this over the weekend smiley - smiley


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 6

Florida Sailor Back From Havana, Cuba

A very good entry indeed! These heroes need to be remembered.
Just a footnote or two you might want to add to Apollo 1;

Edward White's father lived in St. Petersburg, Florida built a hospital and named it in his honour.

After the disaster NASA fitted all the capsules with explosive bolts, so they could be opened instantly in a disaster.

smiley - ok

F smiley - dolphin S


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 7

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Thanks very much Fsmiley - dolphinSsmiley - ok


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 8

Deek

Just a couple of points:

Re explosive bolts.
After the Apollo fire the hatch was modified but it did not have explosive bolts. In fact no NASA spacecraft hatch had been equipped with them.

The hatch was originally designed to open inwards into the spacecraft. In order to open it, it had to be cranked open with a ratchet handle in six different places around the inner hatch. That had to be done by the occupant of the centre couch. In the case of Apollo 1 that was Ed White. The process took at least two minutes at best. Redesign of the hatch provided for unlocking with a central handle and the hatch opening outwards in less than 5seconds.

Apollo 1. Grissom hung a lemon on the Apollo 1 spacecraft.

Well not actually. Grissom hung the lemon on the flight simulator at Cape Canaveral, not on the spacecraft itself. The issue was about the programming and function of the simulator, not necessarily the spacecraft.



A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 9

Florida Sailor Back From Havana, Cuba

Not worth a quibble, the important fact is the hatch was modified after the deadly fire. I swear I can remember a stencil over the hatches that warned 'Caution: Explosive Bolts”, but maybe that was in my imagination smiley - erm

smiley - cheers

F smiley - dolphin S


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 10

You can call me TC

May I ask about the sentence: "Clifton's wife Beth gave birth to their second daughter Jane posthumously on 31 May, 1968." Did the wife die in the accident, too? From the time line, I would doubt it.

Perhaps "Clifton became a father posthumously...." or leave posthumously out all together and just say "after his death".


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 11

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

He was already a father, so I've changed it to "after his death"


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 12

SashaQ - happysad - Editor

Interesting about the lemon... http://www.history.nasa.gov/Apollo204/zorn/grissom.htm As I read this, he was planning on putting the lemon on the spacecraft, but settled for putting it on the simulator instead... http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/SP-4205/ch8-7.html

The explosive bolts were mentioned on Grissom's NASA history page, too, so maybe that's what you were thinking of, FS...


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 13

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

I've also been researching explosive boltssmiley - yikes

I have updated to include Deke's suggestions but now I am wondering whether Yuri Gagarin belongs in this line-up. He was on my list of articles to write anywaysmiley - rose


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 14

minorvogonpoet

I'm no expert but I would have thought that, given the dangers and complexities of space travel, it's remarkable that there haven't been more fatalities. Perhaps you should give a nod to those on the ground who have worked hard to make space flight as safe as possible?

I wondered about a couple of those listed. Edward Ed Givens, who was killed when his car crashed. Was the crash linked to his work as an astronaut?

Clifton C Williams. You said he was killed in a T-38 jet plane crash
on the way to see his terminally ill father. Did there happen to be a flight planned that went part of the way?


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 15

You can call me TC

Yes - I was going to comment about what mvp said: that so few astronauts have actually died in space. Interesting!


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 16

Florida Sailor Back From Havana, Cuba

The T-38 ('T' stands for trainer) was the official aircraft assigned to astronauts for their personal use. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/flyout/t38flyout.html

On a personal note;
I have lived on the west coast of Florida since 1963. While over a hundred miles from the space-port at Cape Canaveral (The Kennedy Space Center) the flames and smoke of the launches can be clearly seen on the horizon here after a few minutes of flight. We could also here the distinctive double boom of the sonic wave as the shuttles returned after their flights.

By the time of the Challenger flight I had watched dozens of launches on the horizon and they had become mundane. I was at work and decided to ignore the launch and just stay at my desk.

Shortly after I head the rumors that something had gone terribly wrong. I walked outside and the twisted smoke trails were still quite visible.

I never took another space flight as routine after that smiley - sadface

Not suggesting that you include my story, but I thought you might find it of interest.

F smiley - dolphin S


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 17

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Thanks FS, I can include your poignant story smiley - rose

Givens and Williams weren't in my original list but suggestions here. I am now rethinking whether to stick to just those killed on space-related duties, including training flights.

I'll definitely write something about those on the ground who work hard to make spaceflight as safe as possiblesmiley - ok


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 18

Deek

On your consideration you might want to have a look at two Soviet Cossmonauts who’s names are new to me and I didn’t know about until reading up about Dave Scott’s list of fallen astronauts. That’s probably because the Soviets hid the details of their deaths, even to the extent of airbrushing them from the official group photos of their cosmonauts.They are:
Valetine Bondarenko
Grigori Nelyubov.

You can find entries about them on wiki for ease of reference. Both were accepted as Cosmonauts. Both died before getting a flight into space. One you might want to include in your piece, the other maybe not. But it makes torrid reading.

One other name that’s cropped up BTW is ‘Sonny’ Carter. He flew on a Shuttle mission STS-33 and was slated for a further one STS 42, but was killed in a civilian airline crash before he could fly the second one.

FWIW: I think you should include those who had been accepted into their respective countries space programs as Astronauts/Cosmonauts and are on either Scott’s list or the NASA mirror memorial. Gagarin is on Scott’s list.

One other question re Barbra Morgan. Christie McAuliffe’s back up. Not sure about her but did she die? I think wiki has her only as retired as of 3 years ago.

All the best
Deek


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 19

Galaxy Babe - eclectic editor

Thanks Deke. No, Barbara Morgan isn't dead. She's a subheader in the Challenger section because of her bravery. Being so close to the whole crew who died, and the process of it all, would've put a lesser person off, you'd think. But it spurred her on, and she ended up being a robotic arm operator, helping to build the International Space Station.

It's tough reading about the horrible deaths. I'll add Sonny Carter and think about the others. Won't be today though. I'll inform when updatedsmiley - tekcorsmiley - moon


A87901284 - Astronauts and Cosmonauts - the Roll of Honour

Post 20

Deek

There’s been another one that you may want to consider. It’s been nagging away at the back of my memory, but I just couldn’t think of until last night. It was of course one of the pilots of the Virgin Galactic SS2, USS Enterprise, that broke up just after launch from its mother plane over the Mojave desert in 2014. It was actually the co-pilot Michael Alsbury who was killed while the pilot, Peter Siebold was badly injured.

Deek smiley - smiley


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