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Memorial Service for Alan Shepard August 1st.
News story originally written on July 30, 1998
A memorial service in honor of Alan Shepard is scheduled for August 1st in Houston, Texas. Shepard died Tuesday, July 21, at the age of 74.
"Alan Shepard is a true American hero, a pioneer, an
original. He was part of a courageous corps of astronauts that
allowed us to reach out into space and venture into the unknown,"
said George W.S. Abbey, Director of the Johnson Space Center,
Houston, TX. "Alan Shepard gave all of us the privilege to
participate in the beginnings of America's great adventure of
human space exploration."
Shepard was the first American to fly in space, on May 5, 1961 in the Freedom 7 Mercury capsule.
Shepard commanded the Apollo 14 mission to the moon. He was the fifth of only twelve Americans ever to walk on the moon. While he was there, he and astronaut Edgar Mitchell set up a science station, collected 92 pounds of rocks and gathered soil samples. Just before leaving the moon, Shepard hit two golf balls across the surface, which he said traveled "miles and miles and miles."
Only 4 of the original Mercury 7 astronauts are still alive:Sen. John Glenn, Scott Carpenter, L. Gordon Cooper and Walter Schirra.
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