Kuiper stands majestically in front of a SeaKing helicopter.

Gemini IV

Kuiper poses majestically in front of the real Gemini 4 recovery helicopter (while I lay on the floor with my camera 😂.) Thank you @usshornetmuseum for granting Kuiper permission to come aboard.

On June 7, 1965, this Sikorsky SeaKing Helicopter retrieved Ed White and Jim McDivitt (as well as their capsule) from the Atlantic ocean. It would subsequently be repainted as number 66 and used in the Apollo 13 movie! The SeaKing now resides at the USS Hornet museum in Alameda, California, where it is on permanent loan from @navalaviationmuseum. I’ll have to ask @sawyer_the_seadog if he’s ever been there.

Gemini 4 had a lot of firsts for the US:
♊ At 4 days long, it’s our first real multi-day space mission (compare it to the next longest flight, Mercury-Atlas 9, which lasted 34 hours.)
♊ It was the first mission managed by the new Mission Control in Houston (Mercury and Gemini 3 were controlled out of Cape Canaveral.)
♊ First time using a sextant in space (those old-timey looking tools that you look down to measure the angle between a star and the horizon. They came in heckin’ useful for the Apollo moon missions, for reasons I will explain in a separate post.)
♊ First attempt at a rendezvous (line up with another object.) It didn’t work out, but was worth a shot.
♊ (deep breath) America’s first SPAAAACEWALK!!! Ed loved it so much that he did NOT want to come back inside. 😅

REAL MISSION AUDIO EXCERPT

CAPCOM (Gus Grissom, at Mission Control): Gemini 4, get back in! 
Jim: We’re coming over the West area, and they want you to come back in now.
Ed: Back in?
Jim: Back in.
CAPCOM: Roger, we’ve been trying to talk to you for awhile here.
Ed: No, this is fun! Just a few pictures.
Jim: No, back in. Come on.
Ed: Coming in. Listen, you could almost not drag me in, but I’m coming.
(2 minutes later… 😂)
Ed: Actually, I’m trying to get a better picture.
Jim: No, come on in.
Ed: I’m trying to get a picture of the spacecraft now.
Jim: Ed, come on in here!
Ed: All right. Let me fold the camera…this is the saddest moment of my life.

I don’t think I would have wanted to come back in, either. 😁 “JUST FIVE MORE MINUTES, OK MOM??” 😂 What about you?

Original post: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bv1rZvXD7Eh/

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