Lecturers for 2016-2017
University of Alabama-Huntsville:
Osher Lifelong Learning Institute
Special Interest Speaker:
Oct 29-Nov 12, 2016 Celebrity Cruise Line-Southampton, United Kingdom to New York, NY
Summaries of the talks that Ed Buckbee is now delivering are listed below. Please contact Ed if you are interested in having him speak at one of your upcoming events.
Light this Candle
Flight of Alan B. Shepard, Jr.
America’s First Astronaut
May 5, 1961
Fifty years ago, May 5, 1961, an astronaut clad in a silver spacesuit lay on his back inside a crammed Mercury capsule on Pad 5 at Cape Canaveral. He had been in this position for over three hours. Frustrated and a bit irritated he uttered the famous words, “Why don’t you fix your little problem and light this candle.” So began America’s first manned space flight, Alan B. Shepard, Jr. aboard Freedom 7, a sub-orbital flight that would launch this country into a space race with the Russians. Ed Buckbee, author of The Real Space Cowboys, was there at the Cape that morning and will share with you the story of that famous space flight. Shepard, a Naval Academy graduate, naval aviator, fighter pilot and original Mercury Seven astronaut, was cocky, egotistical and walked with a bit of swagger. He became a member of that exclusive brotherhood of astronauts who all aspired to ascend to the top of the pyramid. When asked why he was selected to go first, he replied, “because I was the best.” That was Shepard. Later he would become the only Mercury astronaut to command a mission to the moon and only one of twelve humans to walk on the moon. After retiring from the astronaut corps, Shepard started the Mercury Scholarship Foundation with his Mercury astronaut colleagues, awarding scholarships to college students. He was instrumental in organizing Space Camps here and aboard. During his last visit to Space Camp, Shepard said,” Whether we go to Mars tomorrow, or 25 years from now, the important thing is we have to continue developing space technology. We must continue human space flight. It is the legacy us old guys leave to you young guys. Take it, wear it well and do well.”
Ed Buckbee, a alumni of NASA public affairs and founder of Space Camp who’s appeared on CNN, Today Show, Late Night with David Letterman, Good Morning America, was there when the astronauts flew on all of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo moon landing missions. Founder of Space Camp and co-founder of the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, he worked closely with Wernher von Braun during the development of the Saturn V moon rocket. An author, speaker and space advocate, Buckbee teamed with the late astronaut Wally Schirra in authoring the book entitled, “The REAL Space Cowboys.”
In 1969, Americans Landed on the Moon
Presented By Ed Buckbee
“Apollo may be the only achievement for which our generation is remembered, a 1000 years from now”…Arthur C. Clark
Twelve Americans walked on the moon. Others have tried but only Americans succeeded. No human has been out of earth orbit since 1972 when the last man on the moon, Gene Cernan returned home with his Apollo 17 crew. In the race to the moon with the Russians, Ed Buckbee was a NASA spokesman who worked with all the Apollo astronauts including the now famous moon walkers. His personal stories of this brotherhood of astronauts who competed for moon shots are the real deal. The competition for rides, the close calls, near tragedies and splashdown parties are told as he experienced them as a close colleague of these famous space flyers. He relates how they trained and encounters he had with the astronauts before they became famous moon walkers. On the first moon mission, Buckbee describes Neil Armstrong's descent to the moon as his fuel runs out with only seconds remaining. He takes you behind the scenes during the Apollo I fire that killed three astronauts and Apollo 13 that nearly became the lost in space mission, ’Houston, we have a problem.’ You ride along with John Young as he drives the lunar rover, the ultimate driving machine on the moon. Only three days by Saturn rocket to the moon, Buckbee describes the mammoth machine and you listen in as the Saturn riders exclaim, ‘Whew, what a ride!’ You blast off the moon with the last man to walk on the moon, Gene Cernan, as he flies his moon ship home. Where are those moonwalkers today and what do you do after you have been to the moon; attend anniversaries, reunions and memorial services? Buckbee takes you to the moon and back in his exciting and dramatic MOON WALKERS.
Ed Buckbee, alumnus of NASA Public Affairs, lecturer, director emeritus, space advocate and author of The Real Space Cowboys presents a power point presentation with rarely seen manned space flight photos and videos, designed for all audiences.
Meet The REAL Space Cowboys
“Levity is the lubricate of a crisis", says Wally Schirra. "We resort to jokes, pranks and good natured kidding to relieve tension, stress and boredom.”
In 1959, seven pilots were selected to train as America’s first astronauts. Alan Shepard, Wally Schirra, Gordon Cooper, Gus Grissom, John Glenn, Scott Carpenter and Deke Slayton accepted their country’s call to service and would become known as the Mercury 7. These men who had jockeyed for the best flying jobs in the military, began competing for rides on rockets. Most would eventually vie for the ultimate ride to the moon. This was the dream—a chance to ascend to the top of the pyramid—a lion-hearted pilot’s deepest desire. Author Buckbee, who has enjoyed a 40 + year association with the U.S. space program, follows these brave pioneers. From Alan Shepard’s sub-orbital flight to the last man to walk on the moon Gene Cernan and Deke Slayton’s Apollo-Soyuz mission with the Russians; Buckbee covers all the manned missions of that era. Through time and personal friendships, he captures their dreams of flying higher, faster and farther than anyone in the known universe. You are taken behind the scenes to witness the competition between chimpanzees and astronauts and the conflict between NASA engineers designing capsules and those who would pilot them. They were our first astronauts. The path they blazed now shines for others; on a voyage that is a measure of the best in us all. The Mercury 7 astronauts were first. They are The REAL Space Cowboys, who had the right stuff.
Ed Buckbee, a lecturer, space advocate and author presents a power point presentation with rarely seen early manned space flight photos and videos designed for all audiences. An alumnus of NASA Public Affairs, Buckbee who’s appeared on CNN, Today Show, Late Night with David Letterman, Good Morning America, was there when the astronauts flew on the early Mercury, Gemini and Apollo moon landing missions. Founder of Space Camp and co-founder of the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, Buckbee teamed with Wally Schirra in authoring a book entitled, “The REAL Space Cowboys.” that he describes in Meet the Real Space Cowboys.
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