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[i]This morning, at 12:18 a.m., the Pad Leader launched his final mission: Dad passed away peacefully, with my sister Dickie, Wendy and myself at his side.
Dad had a good run, and was extremely fortunate to be in the right place at right time to make and be part of history. Although we will miss him, he leaves behind a grand legacy, due in no small part to many, many wonderful friends. Some of those friends are no doubt reminiscing with, and listening to, Dad talk about what incredible experiences they all shared.
We could all be so lucky... Godspeed, Dad![/i]
[URL=http://www.collectspace.com/news/news-050310a.html]Guenter Wendt, 86, 'Pad Leader' for NASA moon missions, dies[/URL]
[i]Guenter Wendt, the original pad leader for NASA's manned space program who was the last man the Apollo astronauts saw before launching to the moon, died at his home in Merritt Island, Fla., early Monday morning after being hospitalized for congestive heart failure and then suffering a stroke. He was 86.
Reporting to Cape Canaveral as a McDonnell Aircraft Corp engineer working on missile projects soon after gaining his American citizenship in 1955, Wendt, who was born and educated in Berlin, became part of the effort to launch the first U.S. astronauts into space.
As pad leader -- or "pad führer" as the astronauts came to affectionally call him due to his strong German accent and unwavering rules -- Wendt oversaw the spacecraft on the launch pads and all who had access to them to ensure the safety of all those involved...[/i]
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