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  Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot: The Remarkable Life of Apollo 14 Astronaut Stuart Roosa

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Author Topic:   Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot: The Remarkable Life of Apollo 14 Astronaut Stuart Roosa
heng44
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posted 03-30-2011 07:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Author Willie Moseley let me know that his book "Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot: The Remarkable Life of Apollo 14 Astronaut Stuart Roosa" will be published this fall by Acclaim Press of Morley, Missouri. Details will follow.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 03-31-2011 07:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I look forward to that.

There's too little written about the lives of those Apollo astronauts who left us far too early... Roosa, Irwin, Swigert, Evans.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-01-2011 11:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Some additional details, courtesy author Willie Moseley:
  • Foreword by Charlie Duke

  • This book follows Roosa through his somewhat-rugged childhood (his father was a surveyor and the family was very transient), his smoke jumping experiences in the Pacific Northwest (he began jumping at age 19), how he won his wings (via the now-extinct cadet program), his time at Edwards AFB (three other guys in his test pilot school class also became astronauts), and his NASA efforts (including detailed history of his work before being selected as prime CMP for Apollo 14 -- he was, for example, the CapCom when the Apollo 1 fire happened). Also discusses his post-NASA business ventures and activities.

  • It's also a people/family story, with recollections by Roosa family members (including all four children), former schoolmates and fellow smoke jumpers.

  • Memories from several astronauts are also interpolated, including (alphabetical order) Messrs. Armstrong, Brand, Cernan, Cunningham, Duke, Haise, Hartsfield, Lovell, Mitchell, Schmitt, Schweickart, Scott, and Worden.

  • Geologist Farouk El-Baz, who worked closedly with CMPs, also contributed recollections.

  • Should have about 60 photos, including images supplied by family members, and some NASA pictures which, to my knowledge, have not been seen in previous books.
Moseley says he is "a 60-year old Baby Boomer who is as much of a space history buff as I am about old guitars and classic rock." Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot will be his eighth book.

Henry Heatherbank
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From: Adelaide, South Australia
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posted 04-01-2011 05:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Henry Heatherbank     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Robert, any details as to pricing etc?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-02-2011 05:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Willie replies:
To answer the inquiry from Australia, the book will be $24.95 list, and while distribution is still being set up (targeting gift shops of air and space museums, big box retailers, etc.) I know it will also be available directly from the publisher's website.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 08-10-2011 12:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Author Willie Moseley has shared the cover art for "Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot".
A couple of things may be tweaked but these should be what a prospective reader encounters on the outside.

BA002
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posted 08-10-2011 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BA002   Click Here to Email BA002     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I look forward to getting to know Stuart Roosa better through this book. Thanks for the update and if it's possible to pre-order I hope we'll be advised about that too.

Gilbert
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posted 08-10-2011 02:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gilbert   Click Here to Email Gilbert     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Unusual cover design. Looks like another book I'll be adding to my collection.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-24-2011 07:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Now available to order from the publisher...

Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot
by Willie G. Moseley

Al Shepard was returning to the cosmos, and this time, he was going to walk on the Moon.

Grounded for most of the Sixties due to an inner ear problem, America's first man in space had been serving as NASA's Chief of the Astronaut Office, and had figured into the selection of crews for American manned space flights. Now healthy and cleared for flight himself, Shepard knew who he wanted on his own Apollo crew.

For Lunar Module Pilot, he selected a brilliant Navy aviator, Edgar Mitchell, a.k.a. "The Brain," who already had a doctorate of science in Aeronautics and Astronautics from M.I.T., and had been highly involved in the design of the Lunar Module.

The Command Module Pilot, who would be responsible for guiding the Apollo spacecraft to the Moon, placing it in a safe orbit, and returning it safely to Earth, was to be Air Force pilot Stuart Roosa.

And Roosa didn't even have a college degree when he had won his Air Force wings, and hadn't been on a backup crew for an Apollo flight.

But when it came to piloting skills, he was that good.

Stu Roosa's life was incredibly diverse – the second son of a government surveyor, he had spent his early childhood in a migratory lifestyle with his family before the Roosas settled in Claremore, Oklahoma, where Stu proved to be an excellent student and developed a lifelong love of hunting.

He became a smoke jumper for the Forest Service before enlisting in the Air Force's aviation cadet program. Excelling in piloting skills, Roosa had graduated from test pilot school at the legendary Edwards Air Force Base before being chosen as an astronaut.

Roosa loved his family and his country, and he loved to fly. Recollections in this detailed biography include memories from family members, schoolmates, and veteran smoke jumpers, pilots, and astronauts.

Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot tells the story of a focused, determined, and patriotic youngster who believed in the American dream, and grew up to live it. At the age of 19, Stu Roosa was parachuting into the woods of the Pacific Northwest to fight forest fires.

  • He joined the Air Force.
  • He became a test pilot at Edwards Air Force Base.
  • He was selected to be an astronaut by NASA.
  • He went to the Moon.
  • He became a successful businessman and big game hunter.
This is the family-authorized biography of Apollo 14 Command Module Pilot Stuart A. Roosa (1933-1994). It's the quintessential, All-American chronicle of the life of an Oklahoma farm boy whose initiative, drive and personal integrity earned him a place among the 24 individuals who made the most dramatic voyage in human history, and it's a story that needs to be told, now more than ever.
  • Acclaim Press, 2011
  • 6"x9" hardbound, 256 pages, illustrated
  • ISBN: 978-1-935001-76-8

space4u
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From: Cleveland, OH USA
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posted 10-28-2011 02:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for space4u   Click Here to Email space4u     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the update Robert. I just placed my order.

FFrench
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From: San Diego
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posted 02-09-2012 02:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Author Willie Moseley asked me to share this today:
The first book signing for "Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot" will be held at the award-winning Will Rogers Museum in Claremore, Oklahoma (Roosa's hometown) on Saturday, March 10th.

Tentatively scheduled to speak are Roosa family members, the publisher, and the author, who will also read a brief excerpt from the book.

In addition to having a disproportionate number of early astronauts (Cooper, Stafford, Pogue, Roosa, etc.), there's also a connection between some earlier Oklahoma aviation pioneers and space flight. Record-setting aviator The Sooner State's Wiley Post was one of the earliest developers of a pressurized flight suit, thus some buffs have proclaimed Post to have "invented the space suit." Post and humorist Will Rogers (who also claimed Claremore as his hometown) perished in a plane crash on 15 AUG 35.

Details about the Roosa book signing will soon be available at willrogers.com

WAWalsh
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From: Cortlandt Manor, NY
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posted 02-10-2012 08:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for WAWalsh   Click Here to Email WAWalsh     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As anyone had the opportunity to read the book yet? Thoughts?

FFrench
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posted 02-10-2012 10:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I read the book in draft form and found it an interesting one. Like so many of these guys, they had intriguing lives both before and after their space careers, as we saw with Bill Pogue's recent book. Roosa's smokejumping career is definitely in that category!

Jurg Bolli
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posted 02-10-2012 12:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Same view as Francis, I enjoyed the book.

jvertrees
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posted 02-11-2012 03:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jvertrees   Click Here to Email jvertrees     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A little off topic but or anyone interested “Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot” author Willie Moseley is a guitar enthusiast and writes a regular column for Vintage Guitar Magazine. He also has several very good books out there on vintage and classic guitars.

I just ordered my copy of Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot today and look forward to reading about Apollo 14’s Stuart Roosa.

FFrench
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From: San Diego
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posted 03-01-2012 06:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Some news coverage of the forthcoming book signing, with more information on the book too.

fredtrav
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posted 03-12-2012 05:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Will Rogers Museum gift shop has signed copies for sale.

BMacKinnon
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posted 03-13-2012 04:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMacKinnon   Click Here to Email BMacKinnon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I ordered my copy today from the museum. Not knowing much about him, I look forward to reading this book!

FFrench
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From: San Diego
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posted 03-13-2012 11:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From author Willie Moseley, a couple of photos of his kickoff book signing at the Will Rogers Memorial Museum, with Roosa family members in attendance. I like the "Welcome Roosa Fans" marquee!

ColinBurgess
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posted 03-14-2012 01:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well done, Willie; another must-have astronaut biography that looks really good. I'll be ordering a copy.

Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
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posted 04-21-2012 09:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Will Rogers Memorial Museum has posted a nice write-up about Willie Moseley's book signing last month.
Space-age fans and Stuart Roosa classmates lined up for a signing at Will Rogers Memorial Museum for the family-authorized book "Smoke Jumper, Moon Pilot: The Remarkable Life of Apollo 14 Astronaut Stuart Roosa" by Willie Moseley. People came from as far away as from Nevada, Texas and Alabama as well as Missouri and all over Oklahoma.

Henry Heatherbank
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From: Adelaide, South Australia
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posted 04-22-2012 02:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Henry Heatherbank     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is a most interestinjg book; one of the more detailed astronaut biographies.

Has anybody else noticed the chapter on Apollo 1, and the cryptic way in which that chapter concludes: an intriguing suggestion from Roosa that the Apollo accident investigation board missed something and "got it wrong". This is something the author says Roosa mentioned to people (including one of his sons) over the years, but always refused to elaborate on, effectively taking to the grave whatever it was he was referring to.

Presumably this was not something so serious as to prevent Roosa from entrusting his life to the Apollo spacecraft a few years later (heavily redesigned though it was).

So, is this just a bit of journalistic hyperbole, or is there something of substance here? Seems a bit odd unless there is some sort of explanation as to what it was all about. Which there isn't.

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 04-22-2012 03:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
At the risk of opening a can of worms, the Apollo 1 fire enquiry was flawed.

Any suggestion that the crew contributed to their own fete that day, however inadvertent, innocent or innocuous was stifled during the enquiry.

A likely hypothesis put forward by NAA was shot down by the board of enquiry as it involved Gus brushing against a disconnected but still powered gas chromatograph cable which.... it was subsequently proved, could arc if moved.

The cable in queston was located in the lower equipment bay near to the ECU adjacent to Gus' couch; the believed origin of the fire.

The findings of the board of enquiry that the fire originated in chaffed wiring in and around the ECU was speculation for which there was little evidence and which directly contradicted eye witness testimony from the morning of the January 27th test.

There was however telemetry and physical evidence to support the NAA hypothesis as to the cause of the fire but that was suppressed.

Imagine a modern day board of enquiry involving a civil aviation crash during which the board on enquiry blatantly discounted any involvement by the crew. It simply would not be permitted.

I read that passage in the Roosa book and came to the conclusion that Stuart believed the NAA proposed scenario was credible but he did not want to denigrate the reputation of the crew in any way.

Which was a shame. Whilst Gus may have triggered the events that started the fire, there was no way that he or any of the crew could have been held responsible for the outcome.

The conditions and circumstances that day meant a highly likely and innocent chain events triggered by the crew made such a fire probable in my opinion.

DChudwin
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posted 06-08-2012 08:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for DChudwin   Click Here to Email DChudwin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just received my copy from amazon.com and I am looking forward to reading it.

I wrote to Stu Roosa in 1970 (long before Apollo 14)to request his autograph on a cover, and he sent me back a personally signed letter, an inscribed business suit litho portrait of himself, and the cover autographed by the entire Apollo 14 crew. Needless to say, I was pleased and grateful.

Roosa was certainly one of the under-appreciated Apollo astronauts, probably because his crew mates on Apollo 14 were such strong figures. His commander was the legendary Alan Shepard and his LM pilot the brilliant Ed Mitchell.

I asked Ed Mitchell last year why Shepard had chosen him as LM pilot on the crew. There has been some who criticized Mitchell's selection because of his relative junior status. "Because he wanted to get home," was Mitchell's reply.

This also applies to Shepard's unique choice of Stu Roosa. Shepard, as head of the Astronaut Office, knew the capabilities of these guys as well as anyone. That he chose to fly with Roosa was unusual in that Roosa had not been on any back-up crew prior to his seletion for a prime crew. Roosa's direct ascent to a prime crew speaks a lot about Shepard's high opinion of Roosa's abilities.

Fra Mauro
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posted 06-08-2012 11:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fra Mauro   Click Here to Email Fra Mauro     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is a shame that Roosa didn't elaborate more on the Apollo fire investigation.

While Mitchell and Roosa did outstanding jobs, only Shepard could pull off taking two astronauts with such little crew experience.

FFrench
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From: San Diego
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posted 10-10-2012 01:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Another interesting review of this book.

astro-nut
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From: washington, Illinois USA
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posted 04-06-2013 02:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for astro-nut   Click Here to Email astro-nut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just finished this book the other day and enjoyed reading it. Very good to learn more about Colonel Roosa. A good book to read.

WAWalsh
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From: Cortlandt Manor, NY
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posted 04-11-2013 12:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for WAWalsh   Click Here to Email WAWalsh     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Actually will chime in with a slightly dissenting vote here. The book is a worthwhile read and does supply a fair amount of new information about Stu Roosa. That said, I would probably give the book a C+ as a grade. While the lack of availability of the subject had obvious impacts on the book, the research into both Roosa role in Apollo 9 and the Apollo 14 mission had the feel of being unresearched. Placing "Smoke Jumper" next to "Light This Candle" and comparing the information in the two helps to illustrate the point.

A good read, but I would not put it on the must read list.

ColinBurgess
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posted 11-21-2013 05:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ColinBurgess   Click Here to Email ColinBurgess     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
An interview with author Willie Moseley was sent to me, which I thought some of you might like to read.

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