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Author Topic:   Best military-related stories about astronauts

Posts: 1004
From: County Down, Nothern Ireland
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 05-09-2013 06:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ASCAN1984   Click Here to Email ASCAN1984     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What are the best astronaut military-related stories?

Has to be great ones, e.g. Buzz Aldrin's first MiG kill.

Hart Sastrowardoyo

Posts: 2123
From: Toms River, NJ,USA
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 05-09-2013 06:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Didn't Bill Shepherd tell the astronaut board his best asset was killing someone with a knife?


Posts: 771
From: Olympia, WA, USA
Registered: Sep 2011

posted 05-09-2013 11:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for p51   Click Here to Email p51     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I bet the few astroauts who were SEALs might have had a few good ones.

Hoot Gibson probably had some doozies as well, I'd bet.

Henry Heatherbank

Posts: 146
From: Adelaide, South Australia
Registered: Apr 2005

posted 05-10-2013 05:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Henry Heatherbank     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What about the one where Dave Scott (back seat) and another pilot (Mike Adams? front seat) smacked an F-104 on to the tarmac at Edwards. Scott ejected and the other guy stayed onboard.

Both chose the right course of action in that split-second: the engine was pushed forward into the rear seat compartment where Scott had been, and the other guy's ejection seat got twisted in its rails by the impact, and so would have misfired killing him if he had tried to eject.

How fate is decided by split-second decisions: if each had chosen the other option, they'd be dead.

(To be fair, I think the gear failed on touchdown, so "smacked" might be a little insulting to the pilots.)


Posts: 128
From: Bennington, Vermont, USA
Registered: Feb 2011

posted 05-10-2013 08:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Grounded!   Click Here to Email Grounded!     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I like Jim Lovell's well-known story about navigating back to the carrier Shangri-La after the cockpit went dark in his F2H Banshee, by following the phosphorescent wake left by the ship. I'll bet he was glad to plant his feet on the deck after that mission!


Posts: 258
From: Bristol UK
Registered: Jan 2005

posted 05-10-2013 04:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for star61   Click Here to Email star61     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Other way round... Scott in front seat Mike Adams in back, flying low L/D approaches.

I always thought it must have rankled some of the HOT test pilot astronauts knowing Dr. Rendezvous had two MiG kills and they didn't...


Posts: 829
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 05-10-2013 10:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One of my favorites has always been from John Glenn flying the F-86 in Korea. His squadron mate was shot down and he circled the area to protect him until help arrived. They got there, but Glenn had loitered too long and was very low on fuel.

He climbed up to 41,000' or so to save gas, but the engine flamed out. With no cabin pressure, the canopy frosted over as he glided across friendly lines and dead-sticked into the first American airbase he could reach.

Now for most pilots, it's time to call it a day, go have a beverage, and tell a great story. But not Glenn. He jumps right into another F-86, takes off, and goes right back to the spot where he knew his buddy was.

I'll save the rest of the story for those who haven't read his book, but this kind of thing made Glenn a hero long before the space program came along.

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