Ed Driscoll

Manning The Boards

Will Collier of VodkaPundit notes that today is the 35th anniversary of the splashdown of Apollo 13, and links to a nifty article on the engineers who manned Apollo 13’s Mission Control.

Charles Murray and Catherine Bly Cox wrote a terrific book about 15 years ago called Apollo, which focused on Mission Control and the rest of the “behind the scenes” crew at NASA who designed and safely flew not just Apollo’s manned missions (and recovered and learned from the horrific fire that killed the crew of Apollo 1), but all of the test flights that led up to the moon landings. Naturally, there’s particular attention paid to Mission Control’s role in Apollo 13. The authors quote several men who worked Mission Control who all said that as important as Apollo 11 was, the successful conclusion to Apollo 13 was the program’s finest hour.

I purchased Murray and Cox’s book when it was first published as a lark one day in a South Jersey shopping mall while killing time on a lunch break, only to eventually discover a few years ago that because it was out of print, it was selling for over a hundred dollars via used booksellers. Fortunately, it’s back in publication–and I highly recommend it.