Apollo 13 Astronaut Honored as Ambassador of Exploration
Apollo 13 astronaut Fred Haise was presented with NASA’s Ambassador of Exploration Award by Administrator Charles Bolden in a ceremony in Biloxi, Miss., Haise’s hometown. The award, a moon rock encased in Lucite, is part of the 842 pounds of lunar samples collected during six Apollo expeditions from 1969 to 1972. The ceremony took place at Haise’s old grade school, Gorenflo Elementary, where the award will remain on public display.
Haise was the lunar module pilot on Apollo 13. An explosion forced him and crewmates Jim Lovell and Jack Swigert to convert their lunar module Aquarius into an effective lifeboat. A dedicated support team at the Johnson Space Center in Houston helped “find” enough electrical power on board to ensure their survival and safe return to Earth.
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CUT 1 (1:10)
– BOLDEN: This is a very special day for you and I can only echo what Mr. Gene Goldman said, there is no reason that one or more of you can’t live the life that Fred Haise has lived. You’ve proven by your academic performance that you can learn and you can do exceptionally well. So, nothing would make him happier than being here at home than to be able to read one day that one of you sitting in this audience was on a crew that went to the moon or even better went to Mars so set your sights really big. It’s now my pleasure to present the Ambassador of Exploration Award. This award recognizes the sacrificed and dedication of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo astronauts with this small lunar sample, part of the 842 pounds of moon rocks and soils returned from the six lunar missions from 1969 to 1972. At the base of the award reads a plaque or reads a sample “Is a symbol of human endeavor, for the future of peace and harmony”. It is my honor and pleasure to give this Ambassador of Exploration Award to Fred W. Haise Jr. › Play Now
NASA Astronaut, Lunar Module Pilot
CUT 2 (:16)
– HAISE: This exploration…Ambassador of Exploration Award is a great honor and particularly so to receive it here as mentioned several times where I started my education. Hate to admit it, but it was 1939…70 years ago. › Play Now
CUT 3 (:20)
– HAISE: When you see this rock, you see it as a symbol of the effort made by a lot of people. In fact at the peak of the program there were over 400,000 people. 400,000 people on the NASA team that enabled us to enjoy the successes we had› Play Now