I was deeply saddened on October 10th when living legend and true hero Scott Carpenter passed away. Scott was an inspiration to me as one of the original Mercury Seven. The fact that he was a Colorado University alumni helped as well.
The Mercury Seven were the best-of-the-best chosen from a pool of 500 applicants. They were the original geeks who paved the way to placing human beings on the moon. Take a moment to consider that they truly made world history and inspired generations of young men and women to become pilots, astronauts and engineers. And, they helped inspire millions of others to dream about traveling to other planets, exploring solar systems and more. They did it for real.
There aren’t too many people these days that can set the standard as high as Scott and his fellow astronauts. There are few accomplishments these days that can galvanize the entire planet as the first attempts to leave earth.
Scott first flew into orbit on May 24, 1962. Can you believe that was 51 years ago?
Sure Scott and his fellow astronauts weren’t perfect and they have had their share of controversy. Some are trying to cast doubt on Scott’s accomplishments. We shouldn’t let perceived or even real mistakes overshadow that he passed some of the toughest training of our times, he took the risks, and he placed his life on the line to try push the technological envelope farther than it had been pushed before. He lived the dream for the billions of us who will never get to see earth from space.
I can only hope that there are more people in our life time that can stand on the shoulders of the heros from Mercury Seven, the subsequent legendary missions of Gemini, Apollo and Space Shuttle missions and inspire future generations the way I’ve personally been inspired.