Cecelia "Cece" Bibby, who in 1962 was recruited by John Glenn to design and hand-paint the insignia on the outside of his Mercury spacecraft, died on Wednesday (Nov. 14), according to friends close to her. She was 84.
Bibby, whose "Friendship 7" logo flew alongside Glenn on his historic three-orbit mission, went on to create similar colorful designs for Scott Carpenter's "Aurora 7" and Wally Schirra's "Sigma 7" capsules. To apply the emblems to the spacecraft, Bibby became the first and only woman to ascend the Mercury launch gantry and go inside the "white room" that surrounded the vehicle.
A moment of silence can be signified by a reply with no words and only a period.
Posts: 1341 From: ridgefield, ct Registered: May 2002
posted 11-15-2012 12:18 AM
413 is in Member
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posted 11-15-2012 12:24 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 01:28 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 01:40 AM
I am very sad to hear this.
Twelve years ago, I contacted Cece for some background information for our website and over the next year or so, she shared with me many wonderful stories, all of them for the first time. Most of these e-mails were later published on her own website (put up by her friend Ollie) where others followed them up and managed to write some nice articles.
Cece was very happy to talk about the Mercury days (and a lot of other things) and she watched in amazement the increasing activity on her website and how people started discussing her on the internet. She was thrilled when one day, Scott Carpenter contacted her. Next came Wally and Gordo and with them, the autograph market. Eventually, she found her way into the public eye as "the Mercury Artist".
With all her new activities and most stories told (and her computer breaking down), we gradually lost contact, but she always kept a very special place in my heart. Once in a while I would see pictures of her, enjoying herself at space shows, surrounded by her paintings, old friends and new friends, and I was happy to see her happy.
One of the first stories Cece told me, was about the color of the "7" in the logo for Scott Carpenter's Aurora-7 flight. I was surprised to find out it was blue - I had never seen pictures of it and she had Ollie scan one for me. With "Aurora" being also the name of the ship that fired the first shot in the Russian revolution, she told me how glad she was that she did not also paint the "7" in red. "The Soviets had a thing about the color red", she explained with her usual sense of humor.
It is no coincidence that in the Soyuz TMA-07M patch I designed and which will fly a little over a month from now, there is a red seven.
Godspeed Cece Baby.
Rusty B Member
Posts: 239 From: Sacramento, CA Registered: Oct 2004
posted 11-15-2012 01:42 AM
Harald Kraenzel Member
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posted 11-15-2012 01:45 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 02:07 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 02:23 AM
I am particularly saddened by this news.
I had the pleasure of meeting Cece in 2006 at a UACC show in San Antonio. She was a charming and most definitely fun loving person. I particularly treasure my copy of 'All We Did Was Fly to the Moon' which she signed at her photograph on the Aurora 7 and Sigma 7 pages. RIP Cece.
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posted 11-15-2012 03:23 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 04:16 AM
Posts: 2488 From: Titusville, FL USA Registered: Feb 2005
posted 11-15-2012 04:30 AM
Cece will always be the "First Lady" of mission patch artists. Her requirements were different than we have today, but she was able to convey the mission in a simply beautiful way.
All of us who followed in her footsteps owe her a debt. God Bless and thank you.
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posted 11-15-2012 04:35 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 04:57 AM
Larry McGlynn Member
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posted 11-15-2012 06:34 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 06:46 AM
Very sad news.
Posts: 899 From: Humboldt KS USA Registered: Dec 2003
posted 11-15-2012 06:55 AM
Sad news indeed. Miranda and I met her at the San Antonio show too. She was a classy lady and she made us feel special. Rest in peace Cece.
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posted 11-15-2012 07:31 AM
Jerry Brouillette Member
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posted 11-15-2012 09:39 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 09:41 AM
Rest in Peace Cece. God bless. There is a new angel in the heavens now.
history in miniature Member
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posted 11-15-2012 09:57 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 11:52 AM
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posted 11-15-2012 12:03 PM
Earth lost one of its "great ones" today. Cece was a creative, tell it like it is, sometimes feisty person but one who always had a distinctly sweet and caring side for those she considered as friends.
When we met, her mind was sharper than a tack with a wicked sense of humor that was slightly off kilter but in a wonderful sort of way. We shared much time together for several years both on the phone and in person and I considered myself very lucky and fortunate to be her friend. She never really understood why anyone would be interested in her autograph and used to explain that anything she signed would instantly depreciate in value (true story).
When the time actually came, she totally enjoyed the rekindling of her relationships with all of her NASA friends after years of living a quiet, insulated life in relative obscurity. Before she became ill, Cece came to look so forward to each year's autograph show as a chance to reunite with friends and fans, one more time. I believe it was her greatest pleasure during those years.
As a young woman in the work force, Cece was a real trailblazer for all women of the world, though I don't think she viewed herself in that way. At the time she thought of herself as just doing her job as she made her way though what was widely considered a "man's world". Still, she hung with the "big dogs" and proved to all that she could keep up with with the best of them which earned her the respect and friendship of our pioneer astronauts. To strengthen that bond, Cece was fearless in most ways and ALWAYS up for a practical joke which as you might imagine, further endeared her to the Mercury 7.
For as long as the stories are told Cece Bibby's legacy will also live on. I was honored that she considered me her friend and she will always hold a very special place in my heart. — Steve Hankow