Photograph signed

NASA   |   Richard P. FEYNMAN   |   William P. ROGERS

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Item#: 115054 price:$16,500.00

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STRIKING LARGE COLOR PHOTOGRAPH OF THE DOOMED CHALLENGER'S 1985 LAUNCH, THREE MONTHS BEFORE IT EXPLODED, SIGNED BY 24 MEMBERS AND STAFF OF THE ROGERS COMMISSION WHICH INVESTIGATED THE DISASTER, INCLUDING SALLY RIDE, NEIL ARMSTRONG, AND RICHARD FEYNMAN

(NASA) (ROGERS, William P.). Photograph signed. No place, circa 1986. Folio color photograph, measuring 11 by 14 inches; matted and framed, entire piece measures 21 by 25 inches. $16,500.

Exceptional large color photograph of the Challenger taking off on its last successful mission three months before its disastrous explosion, signed and/or inscribed by 24 members of the Rogers Commission (the body that investigated the crash) including Sally Ride, Neil Armstrong, and Richard Feynman. This item belonged to Lt. Col. John B. Hungerford, who was the launch director for the Titan rocket program.

This large color photograph depicting the Challenger taking off is signed or inscribed on the mat by 24 members of the Rogers Commission, which investigated the Challenger tragedy. Attorney General in the Eisenhower administration and later Secretary of State (1969-73), William P. Rogers was selected by President Reagan to head the commission that investigated the disastrous launch of the Space Shuttle Challenger on January 28, 1986. Although Reagan reportedly tapped Rogers "with the hope that he would place little blame on the National Aeronautics and Space Administration," the commission's investigation, particularly the work of physicist Richard Feynman, demonstrated that the rubber O-rings used to prevent gas leaks from the solid rocket boosters were vulnerable in cold weather such as that in which Challenger launched. "Rogers became convinced that the space agency had not been forthcoming about the cold-weather hazard, and he endorsed a sharply critical report" (New York Times).

The photograph's mat is signed as follows: "John, Thanks for all your help. Best Wishes for the future. Gene Covert" (former Chief Scientist of the U.S. Air Force); "John—Thanks! Sally Ride" (first female astronaut in space and two-time Challenger astronaut); "Frog, It's been good. I look forward to seeing you at Cocoa during the next launch. John Chase" (investigator of pre-launch activities and USMC major); "John—a truly great experience to have a chance to work with you. Keep the darts flying as well as the Titans. Best regards always. Frank Gillen" (word processing supervisor for the report); "Jello 'Girl!'" (unidentified); "Frog—Remember, before you launch the next Triton [sic], just before you push the button, think of all the little things that can go wrong. Hope to see you down South. Jack Macidull" (investigator of accident analysis from the FAA; "Frog—It's been great fun working and laughing with you in the Skunkvarks! I'll never forget you, cause you're one of a kind. Best wishes always. Patt" (administrative assistant, from NASA); "John—Thanks very much for your advice and constant support. Your dedication and cooperation will always be remembered and appreciated. it is especially appreciated given the personal sacrifice it required—With great respect, Al Keel" (executive director, from the White House; "Frog—You're the best amphibian I've ever had the pleasure to work with. Remember, if you pull the tongue too hard, it will go off. Larry Malloy was right. I, too, would do it all again. Keep your Titans out of the water! Til we meet again in Cocoa, love Emily [Trapnell]" (coordinator of general investigative activities and FAA attorney); "[sketch of award ribbon labeled 'Hero'] <—Medal for surviving same space with Patt Steve & Bill. Good job! John Shepherd" (NASA tasking coordination, attorney, and captain in the U.S. Navy); "Frog—Fellow Skunkworker, Blue Suiter and Secret Sealer. It was a grand experience. Keep'm Flyin' Steve Hyle" (administrative assistant, from NASA); "Frog—Keep those Titons [sic] flyin'! Will see you in Cocoa Beach, one way or the other. Randy Kehrli" (evidence analyst and DOJ attorney); "Frog—Thanks for your help. It sure was fun. Tom Reinhardt" (executive secretary and major in the U.S. Army); "Frog, it has been great fun working with you. You are the first and probably the only real Frog that I have had the pleasure of meeting. Keep in touch. Vera Barnes —NASA—" (secretary, from NASA); and signed by Neil Armstrong (astronaut), David Acheson (diplomat and son the the former Secretary of State), Bob Hotz (editor of Aviation Week and Space Technology), Robert W. Rummel (executive at TWA and consultant to NASA), Joe Sutter (engineer for Boeing and 747 developer), Jane M. Green (secretary, from NASA), William P. Rogers (chairman of the Commission, former Secretary of State, and Attorney General), Don Kutyna (Air Force general specializing in ICBM and shuttle management), Bud Wheelon (physicist and developer of the CIA's aerial surveillance program), and Richard Feynman (Nobel Prize-winning physicist). This item was inscribed for Lt. Col. John B. Hungerford, the former launch director of the Titan rocket program. "John Hungerford" in an unidentified hand on verso. Photo agency description affixed to verso.

A few inscriptions a bit faded but still legible. About-fine condition.

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