I think it's in pretty poor taste to co-opt this thread dedicated to respecting a fallen hero to jump on the soapbox and spout a bunch of political hogwash. Quit yer bitchin and man up.
Hard to separate what men like John Glenn stood for from the way we've fallen away from the standards he represented, the things you consider "hogwash". "Man up?" I understand everything but that part .... ?
I would personally like to see a lot less political hogwash on this forum. I'm sure many of you agree. Also, hijacking a thread isn't cool at all. I think part of being a man means respecting other's opinions, not trying to cram your opinions down anyone's throat. There's a lot of that going around these days. It gets my ire up. I won't apologize this time.
So, in that vein, I will continue to honor John Glenn with a story I am positive none of you have ever heard, since it occurred in a top secret military observatory where I happened to work.
We almost lost John Glenn 16 years ago, but it was kept a secret.
Most of you remember that John Glenn went back up into space on a space shuttle mission when he was 77 years old.
Some of you might remember that a door near the tail of the shuttle fell off just prior to launch. This door covered the compartment for the drogue 'chutes for braking during the landing.
That very day I had received an assignment to repair the dome on one of the smaller military telescopes at Maui Space Surveillance Systems on Haleakala here on Maui. I just happened to be the only person on site that had experience working with epoxy resin and fiberglass, so I got the job. That meant I had to go through the control room of the 'scope to get to the dome so I got that day's Cypherlock code so I could go in and out at will. Normally I would never get access to these areas as I didn't have the clearance. But needs prevail sometimes. During my work, the facility got a call from NASA and asked us to point one of our scopes to catch and image the shuttle on its first orbit over us. They wanted to know the status of the drogue 'chutes. If there were no 'chutes the only option for landing would be the California desert. Also, we could save the crew an EVA which under the best circumstances is always risky. I was called over to a terminal to watch as the first image came through. How cool is that? But what I saw was a bit disappointing, to say the least. What I saw was a space shuttle shaped triangular blur on the screen that jumped all over the place. I was not allowed to view the post processed images which cleared up that image in a very dramatic way. A while later I was talking to one of the vice presidents of Boeing Aircraft(whose subsidiary Rocketdyne I was working for) and he told me that the technology had advanced to where they could read the tile serial numbers.....I knew him because I built a '69 TR6 for him just before I came to Hawaii. We also found out that a huge amount of luck saved John Glenn and the crew. If that door had fallen off at a different time or had contacted one of the rocket nozzles, the whole shuttle would have blown up. Yeah, when you're an astronaut, you definitely count on having some luck on your side.
Bikes 1974 Commando 1985 Honda Nighthawk 650 1957 Thunderbird/T110 "Flying Tiger" Antique Fans: Loads of Emersons (Two six wingers) plus gyros and orbiters.
There's 100's of people doing outstanding or heroic acts every day, we just don't hear about it...And as Lannis said, Glenn represented a period in this country's history that is now past... There will be more to take Glenn's place...
650 Triumph modified production LSR record holder 133.1 MPH... Twin 650 engine Triumph LSR that goes sorta fast...
Consider this thread locked for now. we'll see what will happen with it. all I can say now is that even BSA & Triumph were affected by the rocket era. I guess many of you own Super rockets, Thunderbirds etc.. John Glenn R.I.P. rode his type of rockets..