Tuesday, June 16, 2015

May 5: Alan Shepard

On this date in History .... May 5, 1961:  

Alan Shepard becomes the 1st American & the 2nd person in space on a short, 15 minute flight as part of the Mercury Seven astronauts, the first American space program.

In 1971, he became commander of Apollo 14 & the 5th person to walk on the moon. “When reporters asked Shepard what he thought about as he sat atop the Redstone rocket, waiting for liftoff, he replied, ‘The fact that every part of this ship was built by the low bidder.’”    

Ten years later, at the age of 47 and the oldest astronaut at the time, Shepard became the commander of Apollo 14, becoming “the fifth and oldest person to walk on the moon.”  He was the only member of the original Mercury Seven to walk on the moon. While he was on the moon, he hit two golf balls. 

Shepard died of leukemia in 1998 and his wife of 53 yrs died 5 weeks later.

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