Tuesday, 23 October 2012

I recently met Captain Richard Frances Gordon, former NASA astronaut and one of only 24 people who have travelled to the moon.  He was part of the Gemini 11 and Apollo 12 missions.  

There he is, in the middle;

He gave an excellent talk, one I'm sure he's given many times over, and his final message was about risk.  He explained that many people are afraid to take risks, discourage their children from taking risks etc but that is how people come to achieve great things, by taking risks, so his parting message was to parents of children, encourage them to take risks, as it's only by doing that, that we can achieve anything and it's ok to fail since sometimes you need to fail at something to learn enough to conquer it the next time.  He did a spacewalk during his November 1969 mission but he failed at the task he'd been given, simply because they hadn't though of designing something to hold his feet to leave his hands free to carry out a task in space.  Consequently he had to hold on with one hand and try and use the other to complete a 2 handed task!  He referred to himself as a failure for that particular element but NASA learned from that for future missions and implemented new designs to account for these difficulties.

I found his talk quite inspiring, there was a big que at the end so that everyone could get a piece of him, either a picture or signature (or both!).

I just shook his hand, told him talk was great, and thanked him.

The mission insignia;

Of course my wife wanted a picture with him, (I don't think she would appreciate me posting so I've "amended" the picture).

Oh yes, Captain Richard Gordon liked my wife alright!   Still an eye for the ladies at 83!

No comments:

Post a Comment