Saturday, June 21, 2014

Flying to Florida with Mrs. Rose Cernan (post 21)

It is July 13, 1969 and I am leaving for Florida to cover the Apollo 11 launch, scheduled for July 16. I meet my friend and fellow space enthusiast Marv Rubenstein at O’Hare Airport; we congratulate each other on the start of our own voyage. Standing in line next to us at the check-in counter is an older lady who looks vaguely familiar. I glance at her ticket and see the name “Rose Cernan”--  mother of astronaut Eugene Cernan! She is being seen off at the airport by her daughter, Gene’s sister Dee, and Dee’s husband. Three years earlier, Marv and I had attended a celebration in Bellwood, Illinois for Cernan (and Tom Stafford) after Gemini 9 where we had seen the Cernan family. We briefly talk to Mrs. Cernan, learning that she too was going to the Cape to see the Apollo 11 launch. We take off from O’Hare for Tampa where we and Mrs. Cernan switch planes to head to the Melbourne airport and an unforgettable experience.

#Apollo11Eyewitness  Post #21

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