Yuri Gagarin signed
    postcard (inscribed)
 
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James Lovell

James Lovell

Born on: 25 Mar 1928
Join NASA in: 17 Sep 1962
Current status: Retired 1 Mar 1973
Spaceflight Position Date
Gemini 7 Pilot 04.12. - 18.12.1965
Gemini 12 Cmdr 11.11. - 15.11.1966
Apollo 8 CMP 21.12. - 27.12.1968
Apollo 13 Cmdr 11.04. - 17.04.1970
 
Spaceflight experience:
Captain Lovell was selected as an Astronaut by NASA in September 1962. He has since served as backup pilot for the Gemini 4 flight and backup Commander for the Gemini 9 flight, as well as backup Commander to Neil Armstrong for the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission.

On December 4, 1965, he and Frank Borman were launched into space on the history-making Gemini 7 mission. The flight lasted 330 hours and 35 minutes and included the first rendezvous of two manned maneuverable spacecraft.

The Gemini 12 mission, commanded by Lovell with Pilot Edwin Aldrin, began on November 11, 1966. This 4-day, 59-revolution flight brought the Gemini program to a successful close. Lovell served as Command Module Pilot and Navigator on the epic six-day journey of Apollo 8 - man's maiden voyage to the moon - December 21-27, 1968. Apollo 8 was the first manned spacecraft to be lifted into near-earth orbit by a 7-1/2 million pound thrust Saturn V launch vehicle; and Lovell and fellow crewmen, Frank Borman and William A. Anders, became the first humans to leave the Earth's gravitational influence.

He completed his fourth mission as Spacecraft Commander of the Apollo 13 flight, April 11-17, 1970, and became the first man to journey twice to the moon. Apollo 13 was programmed for ten days. However, the original flight plan was modified en route to the moon due to a failure of the Service Module cryogenic oxygen system. Lovell and fellow crewmen, John L. Swigert and Fred W. Haise, working closely with Houston ground controllers, converted their lunar module "Aquarius" into an effective lifeboat. Their emergency activation and operation of lunar module systems conserved both electrical power and water in sufficient supply to assure their safety and survival while in space and for the return to earth.

Captain Lovell held the record for time in space with a total of 715 hours and 5 minutes until surpassed by the Skylab flights.

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