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Launch Pads

You ever had a place that you really wanted to see, but for one reason or another events and circumstance stop that visit from happening? Well this was one of the places on my list for almost 20 years. In 1993, thanks to Les and Jill I got to go to Orlando for the first time and one of the things on our agenda was to go to Kennedy Space Center. So we go there and do the normal tour, which at the time during the Space Shuttle period was pretty amazing, but while there I learned of the Historical Tour. This tour took you out to the old launch pads Cape Canaveral where the first Americans into space (The Mercury 7) were launched from. So what happens to me, I go back 4 times and try to do the historical tour and for one reason or another it didn't happen. Well 2011 I try for the 5th time and amazingly I get to do it, 18 years later.

On the tour you are taken to the launch site of the Apollo 1 mission, which almost ended the manned missions to the moon. On 27th January 1967 a test of the systems for the launch on February 21st ended abruptly with a fire in the command module, killing the three astronauts inside in seconds. The launch pad, Launch Complex 34, was used for one more rocket launch, that of Apollo 7 and was then dismantled except for the launch pedestal which was left as a memorial to the three astronauts. The photograph above is of that launch pedestal. 

So if there is that place you want to see, keep trying you will get there eventually, just like the astronauts that eventually made it to the moon.

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