Cape Canaveral, Florida ~ March 10, 2006 ~
Host: Susan Sitko Co-Host: Sylvia Vega
Click above for the current Center Tour
It's a retired engineer's dream... to be taken by NASA employees "behind the scenes" at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. This is primarily where everything is launched that's BIG... like the Space Shuttle and the payloads for the International Space Station, and many solar probes such as the planetary spacecraft now soaring around in our solar system. Both Susan Sitko and Sylvia Vega work at NASA, and have decades of experience there, and both are Kryon readers. This March day they offered to take myself and Florida seminar host and Kryon webmanager Gary Liljegren, to see what the public does not get to see on their tours of this very big area. Although I was impressed with all the hardware that's about to be launched in the months ahead and all the Shuttle support, I was most moved by the history of the place and especially the area where our first American astronauts, the Mercury Seven, climbed in a vehicle about the size of a dumpster, and were shot into orbit. This was courageous stuff, and I had watched it all on television as a young boy in school 44 years ago. It's still here... not maintained, but clearly marked and celebrated for what it represented. I was not only taking myself back to 1962, but I was actually walking on the spots where they walked and launched from. Hopefully I can give you a sense of this as you look at these photogs. I've made them a bit bigger than usual. Be patient while they load. Thank you SUE and SYLVIA! LEE CARROLL
(left) This is the monument to the Mercury 7 astronauts. The Arabic number 7 represents the seven original astronauts. The other figure is the astronomical symbol of the Planet Mercury.

(right) A sign marks pad 14 and the 4 men who launched along with their launch dates.

(below) Sue Sitko with the plaque honoring John Glen.
(above) This is all that's left of the pad. Much has been torn out, since the rust was leeching into the ground water table.
(left) Check out this launch photo about 1963. You can see the Mercury capsule on top, ready to fly, and also clearly see the ramp and support framing that corresponds to the relic above.

(below) Scott Carpenter, L. Gordon Cooper, Jr., John H. Glenn, Jr., Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom, Walter M. Schirra, Jr., Alan B. Shepard, Jr., and Donald K. "Deke" Slayton.
(above left) The "blockhouse" control area is only about 100 yards away from the pad! Compare this to the current situation where the blockhouse is 3 miles from the Shuttle launch pads, and the actual control center is 5 miles! (Middle) That's me on the blockhouse. Yes, those are periscopes. The same kind found on older subs. (above right) Check out the size of the blockhouse door. It's bigger than it looks.
(above left) A very nice touch... they have labelled the parking spaces at this derelict site for the astronauts and their support team. (above right) The weeds take over after all the years of inactivity.
(above) This photo 11/13/64 shows lots of launch activity. The yellow circle is pad 14, where the Mercury project started.