Alan Shepard
Overview
Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr. (November 18, 1923 – July 21, 1998) was an American naval aviator, test pilot, flag officer, and NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

 astronaut
Astronaut
An astronaut or cosmonaut is a person trained by a human spaceflight program to command, pilot, or serve as a crew member of a spacecraft....

 who in 1961 became the second person, and the first American, in space. This Mercury flight was designed to enter space, but not to achieve orbit. Ten years later, at age 47 the oldest astronaut in the program, Shepard commanded the Apollo 14
Apollo 14
Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the American Apollo program, and the third to land on the Moon. It was the last of the "H missions", targeted landings with two-day stays on the Moon with two lunar EVAs, or moonwalks....

 mission, piloting the lander to the most accurate landing of the Apollo missions.
Quotations

I know you're all saying I can go to the moon but I can't find Pasadena.

When Shepard arrived a half-hour late to a book signing of Moon Shot|Moon Shot: The Inside Story of America's Race to the Moon — reported in Sun-Sentinel wire services (June 19, 1995) "Astronaut Late to Signing", Sun-Sentinel|Sun-Sentinel, p. 2A.

There were similarities between these two incidents. The similarity was too much success ... over-confidence and complacency, quite frankly.

Discussing the Apollo 1 fire|1967 Apollo 1 fire and Space Shuttle Challenger disaster|1986 Space Shuttle Challenger disaster incidents — reported in The Deseret News staff (May 7, 1995) "Even Cosmos Is Aghast at Size of Earthly Egos", The Deseret News|The Deseret News, p. A2.

I realized up there that our planet is not infinite. It's fragile. That may not be obvious to a lot of folks, and it's tough that people are fighting each other here on Earth instead of trying to get together and live on this planet. We look pretty vulnerable in the darkness of space.

Josh Getlin, Los Angeles Times|Los Angeles Times (July 19, 1994) "What Does Moon Flight Mean Now", The Seattle Times|The Seattle Times, p. A10.

I guess those of us who have been with NASA ... kind of understand the tremendous excitement and thrills and celebrations and national pride that went with the Apollo program is just something you're not going to create again, probably until we go to Mars.

James Endrst (July 8, 1994) "It's Been 25 Years Since We Took That Giant Leap For Mankind - Moon Odyssey", The Hartford Courant|The Hartford Courant, p. B1. File:Alan B. Shepard 1970.jpg|thumb|Alan Shepard in 1970

We need a continuing presence in space.

Bill Kaczor, Associated Press|Associated Press (May 8, 1993) "Astronauts advocate return to the moon, space flights beyond", The Tampa Tribune|The Tampa Tribune, p. 7.

I think about the personal accomplishment, but there's more of a sense of the grand achievement by all the people who could put this man on the moon.

The Denver Post staff (September 29, 1992) "Shepard still shoots for moon", The Denver Post|The Denver Post, p. 1D.

I can hit it farther on the moon. But actually, my swing is better here on Earth.

The Orlando Sentinel staff (August 13, 1992) "Lunar-Golfer Shepard Takes Swings In Tourney", The Orlando Sentinel|The Orlando Sentinel, p. A2.

If we had said 30 years ago that we were going to have only two incidents with casualties, we would have thought, 'Boy, that's great. To me, that indicates that the program has really exceeded what the early expectations were.

Beth Dickey, Reuters|Reuters (May 5, 1991) "First American in Space Marks 30th Anniversary", The Commercial Appeal|The Commercial Appeal, p. A2. File:Ap14 flag.ogg|thumb|Shepard and Edgar Mitchell|Edgar Mitchell erect flag on lunar surface

No way that any astronaut worth his salt volunteered for the space program to become a hero. You don't select astronauts who want fame and fortune. You select them because they're the best test pilots in the world, they know it, and it's a personal challenge for them. And the astronauts of today are exactly the same.

Roxanne Roberts (May 4, 1991) "Blastoff to the Past - Tribute to America's First Men in Space", The Washington Post|The Washington Post, p. D1.

Encyclopedia
Alan Bartlett Shepard, Jr. (November 18, 1923 – July 21, 1998) was an American naval aviator, test pilot, flag officer, and NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

 astronaut
Astronaut
An astronaut or cosmonaut is a person trained by a human spaceflight program to command, pilot, or serve as a crew member of a spacecraft....

 who in 1961 became the second person, and the first American, in space. This Mercury flight was designed to enter space, but not to achieve orbit. Ten years later, at age 47 the oldest astronaut in the program, Shepard commanded the Apollo 14
Apollo 14
Apollo 14 was the eighth manned mission in the American Apollo program, and the third to land on the Moon. It was the last of the "H missions", targeted landings with two-day stays on the Moon with two lunar EVAs, or moonwalks....

 mission, piloting the lander to the most accurate landing of the Apollo missions. He became the fifth person to walk on the Moon. During the mission he hit two golf balls on the lunar surface.

These were his only two space flights, as his flight status was interrupted for five years (1964-69) during the Mercury and Gemini programs by Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can affect hearing and balance to a varying degree. It is characterized by episodes of vertigo and tinnitus and progressive hearing loss, usually in one ear. It is named after the French physician Prosper Ménière, who, in an article published...

, an inner-ear disease that was surgically corrected before his moon flight. Shepard served as chief of the Astronaut Office from November 1963 – July 1969 (approximately the period of his grounding), and from June 1971 – August 1, 1974 (from his last flight, to his retirement). He was promoted from captain to rear admiral
Rear admiral (United States)
Rear admiral is a naval commissioned officer rank above that of a commodore and captain, and below that of a vice admiral. The uniformed services of the United States are unique in having two grades of rear admirals.- Rear admiral :...

 on August 25, 1971. He retired from the US Navy and NASA in 1974.

During retirement he became a successful businessman. He died of leukemia in 1998, five weeks before the death of his wife of 53 years. They were survived by their three daughters.

Biography

Shepard was born in Derry
Derry, New Hampshire
-Climate:-Demographics:As of the census of 2010, there were 33,109 people, 12,537 households, and 8,767 families residing in the town. The population density was 924.8 people per square mile . There were 13,277 housing units at an average density of 143.2/km²...

, New Hampshire to Lt. Col. Alan B. Shepard, Sr. and Renza (née Emerson) Shepard. He attended primary and secondary schools in East Derry and Derry. He was one of many famous descendants of Mayflower
Mayflower
The Mayflower was the ship that transported the English Separatists, better known as the Pilgrims, from a site near the Mayflower Steps in Plymouth, England, to Plymouth, Massachusetts, , in 1620...

passenger Richard Warren
Richard Warren
Richard Warren was a passenger on the Mayflower in 1620. He settled in Plymouth Colony and was among ten passengers of the Mayflower landing party with Myles Standish at Cape Cod on November 11, 1620...

.

Naval career

Shepard began his naval career after graduation from the United States Naval Academy
United States Naval Academy
The United States Naval Academy is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in Annapolis, Maryland, United States...

 in 1944, and served on the destroyer USS Cogswell
USS Cogswell (DD-651)
USS Cogswell was a in the United States Navy, serving in World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War. The ship is named in honor of Rear Admiral James Kelsey Cogswell, who served during the Spanish-American War, and Captain Francis Cogswell, who served during World War I.Cogswell was launched on 5...

 while it was deployed in the Pacific Ocean during World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

. He subsequently entered flight training at Corpus Christi
Corpus Christi, Texas
Corpus Christi is a coastal city in the South Texas region of the U.S. state of Texas. The county seat of Nueces County, it also extends into Aransas, Kleberg, and San Patricio counties. The MSA population in 2008 was 416,376. The population was 305,215 at the 2010 census making it the...

, Texas and Pensacola
Pensacola, Florida
Pensacola is the westernmost city in the Florida Panhandle and the county seat of Escambia County, Florida, United States of America. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 56,255 and as of 2009, the estimated population was 53,752...

, Florida, and received his naval aviator
Naval Aviator
A United States Naval Aviator is a qualified pilot in the United States Navy, Marine Corps or Coast Guard.-Naming Conventions:Most Naval Aviators are Unrestricted Line Officers; however, a small number of Limited Duty Officers and Chief Warrant Officers are also trained as Naval Aviators.Until 1981...

 wings in 1947. He was assigned to Fighter Squadron 42 based at Norfolk
Norfolk, Virginia
Norfolk is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. With a population of 242,803 as of the 2010 Census, it is Virginia's second-largest city behind neighboring Virginia Beach....

, Virginia and Jacksonville
Jacksonville, Florida
Jacksonville is the largest city in the U.S. state of Florida in terms of both population and land area, and the largest city by area in the contiguous United States. It is the county seat of Duval County, with which the city government consolidated in 1968...

, Florida, and served several tours aboard aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean Sea with the squadron.

In 1950, he attended the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School
United States Naval Test Pilot School
The United States Naval Test Pilot School , located at Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Patuxent River, Maryland, provides instruction to experienced United States Navy, Marine Corps, Army, Air Force, and foreign military experimental test pilots, flight test engineers, and flight test...

 at Patuxent River
Naval Air Station Patuxent River
"Pax River" redirects here. For the river, see Patuxent River.Naval Air Station Patuxent River , also known as NAS Pax River, is a United States Naval Air Station located in St. Mary's County, Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay near the mouth of the Patuxent River. It is home to the U.S...

, Maryland
Maryland
Maryland is a U.S. state located in the Mid Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware to its east...

. After graduation, he participated in flight test work which included high-altitude tests to obtain data on light at different altitudes and on a variety of air masses over the American continent; test and development experiments of the Navy's in-flight refueling system; carrier suitability trials of the F2H-3 Banshee; and Navy trials of the first angled carrier deck. He was subsequently assigned to Fighter Squadron 193 based at Moffett Field, California, a night fighter unit flying Banshee jets. As operations officer of this squadron, he made two tours to the western Pacific on board the carrier USS Oriskany
USS Oriskany (CV-34)
USS Oriskany – nicknamed Mighty O, The O-boat, and Toasted O – was one of 24 s completed during or shortly after World War II for the United States Navy. The ship was the third US Navy ship to bear the name, and was named for the Revolutionary War Battle of Oriskany.The history of...

.

Shepard returned to Patuxent for a second tour of duty and engaged in flight testing the F3H Demon
F3H Demon
The McDonnell F3H Demon was a subsonic swept-wing United States Navy carrier-based jet fighter aircraft. After severe problems with Westinghouse J40 engine that was ultimately abandoned, the successor to the McDonnell F2H Banshee served starting in 1956 redesigned with the J71 engine...

, F8U Crusader, F4D Skyray
F4D Skyray
The Douglas F4D Skyray was an American carrier-based supersonic fighter/interceptor built by the Douglas Aircraft Company...

, and F11F Tiger. He was also project test pilot on the F5D Skylancer
F5D Skylancer
|-See also:-References:NotesBibliography* Angelucci, Enzo. The American Fighter. Sparkford, Somerset, UK: Haynes Publishing Group, 1987. ISBN 0-85429-635-2....

, and his last five months at Patuxent were spent as an instructor in the Test Pilot School. He later attended the Naval War College
Naval War College
The Naval War College is an education and research institution of the United States Navy that specializes in developing ideas for naval warfare and passing them along to officers of the Navy. The college is located on the grounds of Naval Station Newport in Newport, Rhode Island...

 at Newport
Newport, Rhode Island
Newport is a city on Aquidneck Island in Newport County, Rhode Island, United States, about south of Providence. Known as a New England summer resort and for the famous Newport Mansions, it is the home of Salve Regina University and Naval Station Newport which houses the United States Naval War...

, Rhode Island, and upon graduating (master of arts in military science) in 1958 was assigned to the staff of the Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet, as aircraft readiness officer.

He logged more than 8,000 hours flying time—3,700 hours in jet aircraft.

Mercury: Freedom 7 pilot

In 1959, Shepard was one of 110 military test pilots invited by the newly-formed National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

 to volunteer for the first US manned space flight program
Project Mercury
In January 1960 NASA awarded Western Electric Company a contract for the Mercury tracking network. The value of the contract was over $33 million. Also in January, McDonnell delivered the first production-type Mercury spacecraft, less than a year after award of the formal contract. On February 12,...

. Following a gruelling series of physical and psychological tests, NASA selected Shepard to be one of the original group of seven Mercury astronauts
Mercury Seven
Mercury Seven was the group of seven Mercury astronauts selected by NASA on April 9, 1959. They are also referred to as the Original Seven and Astronaut Group 1...

.
In January 1961, Shepard was chosen for the first American manned mission into space. Although the flight was originally scheduled for October 1960, delays by unplanned preparatory work meant that this was postponed several times, initially to March 6, 1961 and finally to May 5. On April 12, 1961, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin
Yuri Gagarin
Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin was a Soviet pilot and cosmonaut. He was the first human to journey into outer space, when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on April 12, 1961....

 had become the first person in space and to orbit the Earth.

On May 5, 1961, Shepard piloted the Freedom 7 mission and became the second person, and the first American, to travel into space. He was launched by a Redstone rocket
Mercury-Redstone Launch Vehicle
The Mercury-Redstone Launch Vehicle, designed for NASA's Project Mercury, was the first American manned space booster. It was used for six sub-orbital Mercury flights from 1960–61; culminating with the launch of the first, and 11 weeks later, the second American in space.A member of the...

, and unlike Gagarin's 108-minute orbital flight, Shepard stayed on a ballistic trajectory—a 15-minute suborbital flight which carried him to an altitude of 116 smi and to a splashdown point 302 smi down the Atlantic Missile Range. Unlike Gagarin, whose flight was strictly automatic, Shepard had some control of Freedom 7, spacecraft attitude
Aircraft principal axes
An aircraft in flight is free to rotate in three dimensions: pitch, nose up or down about an axis running from wing to wing), yaw, nose left or right about an axis running up and down; and roll, rotation about an axis running from nose to tail. The axes are alternatively designated as lateral,...

 in particular. The launch was seen live on television by millions.
Shortly before the launch, Shepard said to himself: "Don't fuck up, Shepard..." This quote was reported as "Dear Lord, please don't let me fuck up" in The Right Stuff, though Shepard confirmed this as a misquote. Regardless, the latter quote has since become known among aviators as "Shepard's Prayer."

According to Gene Kranz
Gene Kranz
Kranz's book, titled Failure Is Not an Option, published five years after the movie, stated, "...a creed that we all lived by: "Failure is not an option."" . The book has three index references for the phrase, but none of those give any indication of the phrase being apocryphal...

 in his book, Failure Is Not an Option
Failure Is Not an Option
Failure Is Not an Option is a presentation on the History Channel documenting the United States' space program with insights from the flight engineers, project managers, flight controllers, astronauts, and others involved inside the National Aeronautics and Space Administration...

, "When reporters asked Shepard what he thought about as he sat atop the Redstone rocket, waiting for liftoff, he had replied, 'The fact that every part of this ship was built by the low bidder.'"

After a dramatic Atlantic Ocean recovery, Commander Shepard observed, "…didn't really feel the flight was a success until the recovery had been successfully completed. It's not the fall that hurts; it's the sudden stop." After his successful return, Shepard was celebrated as a national hero, honored with parades in Washington, New York and Los Angeles and received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal
NASA Distinguished Service Medal
The NASA Distinguished Service Medal is the highest award which may be bestowed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the United States...

 from President John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

.

Later, he was scheduled to pilot the Mercury-Atlas 10
Mercury-Atlas 10
Mercury-Atlas 10 was a cancelled early manned space mission, which would have been the last flight in NASA's Mercury program. It was planned as a three-day extended mission, to launch in late 1963; the spacecraft, Freedom 7-II, would have been flown by Alan Shepard, a veteran of the suborbital...

 Freedom 7-II three-day extended duration mission in October 1963. The MA-10 mission was cancelled on June 13, 1963. He was the back-up pilot for Gordon "Gordo" Cooper
Gordon Cooper
Leroy Gordon Cooper, Jr. , also known as Gordon Cooper, was an American aeronautical engineer, test pilot and NASA astronaut. Cooper was one of the seven original astronauts in Project Mercury, the first manned space effort by the United States...

 for the MA-9
Mercury-Atlas 9
Mercury-Atlas 9 was the final manned space mission of the U.S. Mercury program, launched on May 15, 1963 from Launch Complex 14 at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The spacecraft, named Faith 7, completed 22 Earth orbits before splashing down in the Pacific Ocean, piloted by astronaut Gordon Cooper, then...

 mission.

Gemini: Chief astronaut

After the Mercury-Atlas 10 mission was cancelled, Shepard was designated as the command pilot of the first manned Project Gemini
Project Gemini
Project Gemini was the second human spaceflight program of NASA, the civilian space agency of the United States government. Project Gemini was conducted between projects Mercury and Apollo, with ten manned flights occurring in 1965 and 1966....

 mission. Thomas Stafford
Thomas Patten Stafford
Thomas Patten Stafford is a retired American Air Force lieutenant general and former NASA astronaut. He flew aboard two Gemini space flights; and in 1969 was the commander of Apollo 10, the second manned mission to orbit the Moon and the first to fly a lunar module there.In 1975, Stafford was...

 was chosen as his co-pilot. In early 1964, Shepard was diagnosed with Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can affect hearing and balance to a varying degree. It is characterized by episodes of vertigo and tinnitus and progressive hearing loss, usually in one ear. It is named after the French physician Prosper Ménière, who, in an article published...

, a condition in which fluid pressure builds up in the inner ear. This syndrome causes the semicircular canals and motion detectors to become extremely sensitive, resulting in disorientation, dizziness, and nausea. The condition caused him to be removed from flight status for most of the 1960s (Gus Grissom
Gus Grissom
Virgil Ivan Grissom , , better known as Gus Grissom, was one of the original NASA Project Mercury astronauts and a United States Air Force pilot...

 and John Young were assigned to Gemini 3
Gemini 3
Gemini 3 was the first manned mission in NASA's Gemini program, the second American manned space program. On March 23, 1965, the spacecraft, nicknamed The Molly Brown, performed the seventh manned US spaceflight, and the 17th manned spaceflight overall...

 instead).

Also in 1963, he was designated Chief of the Astronaut Office
Chief of the Astronaut Office
The Chief of the Astronaut Office is the most senior leadership position for active astronauts at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration...

 with responsibility for monitoring the coordination, scheduling, and control of all activities involving NASA astronauts. This included monitoring the development and implementation of effective training programs to assure the flight readiness of personnel for crew assignments on manned space flights; furnishing pilot evaluations applicable to the design, construction, and operations of spacecraft systems and related equipment; and providing qualitative scientific and engineering observations to facilitate overall mission planning, formulation of feasible operational procedures, and selection and conduct of specific experiments for each flight.

Apollo: Apollo 14 commander

Shepard was restored to full flight status in May 1969, following corrective surgery (using a newly-developed method) for Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease
Ménière's disease is a disorder of the inner ear that can affect hearing and balance to a varying degree. It is characterized by episodes of vertigo and tinnitus and progressive hearing loss, usually in one ear. It is named after the French physician Prosper Ménière, who, in an article published...

. He was originally assigned to command Apollo 13
Apollo 13
Apollo 13 was the seventh manned mission in the American Apollo space program and the third intended to land on the Moon. The craft was launched on April 11, 1970, at 13:13 CST. The landing was aborted after an oxygen tank exploded two days later, crippling the service module upon which the Command...

, but as it was felt he needed more time to train, he and his crewmates (lunar module pilot Edgar Mitchell and command module pilot Stuart Roosa
Stuart Roosa
Stuart Allen Roosa was a NASA astronaut, who was the command module pilot for the Apollo 14 mission. The mission lasted from January 31 to February 9, 1971 and was the third mission to land astronauts on the Moon...

) swapped missions with the then crew of Apollo 14 (James Lovell
Jim Lovell
James "Jim" Arthur Lovell, Jr., is a former NASA astronaut and a retired captain in the United States Navy, most famous as the commander of the Apollo 13 mission, which suffered a critical failure en route to the Moon but was brought back safely to Earth by the efforts of the crew and mission...

, Ken Mattingly
Ken Mattingly
Thomas Kenneth "Ken" Mattingly II, is a retired American astronaut and rear admiral in the United States Navy who flew on the Apollo 16, STS-4 and STS-51-C missions. He had been scheduled to fly on Apollo 13, but was held back due to concerns about a potential illness...

 and Fred Haise
Fred Haise
Fred Wallace Haise, Jr. is an engineer and former NASA astronaut. He is one of only 24 people to have flown to the Moon. Having flown on Apollo 13, Haise was to be the sixth human to walk on the Moon, but the mission did not land due to a failure aboard the spacecraft.-Early life and...

).

As the oldest astronaut in the program at age 47, Shepard made his second space flight as commander of Apollo 14 from January 31 – February 9, 1971, America's third successful lunar landing mission. Shepard piloted the Lunar Module Antares to the most accurate landing of the entire Apollo program. This was the first mission to successfully broadcast color television pictures from the surface of the Moon, using a vidicon tube camera. (The color camera on Apollo 12 provided a few brief moments of color telecasting before it was inadvertently pointed at the Sun, ending its usefulness.) While on the Moon, Shepard used a Wilson six-iron head attached to a lunar sample scoop handle to drive golf balls. Despite thick gloves and a stiff spacesuit which forced him to swing the club with one hand, Shepard struck two golf balls; driving the second, as he jokingly put it, "miles and miles and miles."

Following Apollo 14, Shepard returned to his position as Chief of the Astronaut Office in June 1971. He was appointed by President Nixon
Richard Nixon
Richard Milhous Nixon was the 37th President of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974. The only president to resign the office, Nixon had previously served as a US representative and senator from California and as the 36th Vice President of the United States from 1953 to 1961 under...

 in July 1971 as a delegate to the 26th United Nations General Assembly
United Nations General Assembly
For two articles dealing with membership in the General Assembly, see:* General Assembly members* General Assembly observersThe United Nations General Assembly is one of the five principal organs of the United Nations and the only one in which all member nations have equal representation...

, serving from September to December 1971. He was promoted to rear admiral by Nixon that same year before retiring both from the Navy and NASA on August 1, 1974.

Later years

After Shepard left NASA, he served on the boards of many corporations. He also served as president of his umbrella company for several business enterprises, Seven Fourteen Enterprises, Inc. (named for his two flights, Freedom 7 and Apollo 14).
In 1994, he published a book with two journalists, Jay Barbree
Jay Barbree
Jay Barbree is a correspondent for NBC News, focusing on space travel. Barbree is the only journalist to have covered every manned space mission in the United States, beginning with the first American in space, Alan Shepard aboard Freedom 7 in 1961, continuing through to the last mission of the...

 and Howard Benedict, called Moon Shot: The Inside Story of America's Race to the Moon
Moon Shot
Moon Shot: The Inside Story of America's Race to the Moon is a book written by Mercury Seven astronaut Alan Shepard, with NBC News correspondent Jay Barbree and Associated Press space writer Howard Benedict. Astronaut Donald K. "Deke" Slayton is also listed as an author, although he died before...

. Fellow Mercury astronaut Deke Slayton
Deke Slayton
Donald Kent Slayton , better known as Deke Slayton, was an American World War II pilot and later, one of the original NASA Mercury Seven astronauts....

 is also named as an author. The book generated some controversy for use of a staged photo purportedly showing Shepard hitting a golf ball on the Moon The book was also turned into a TV
Television
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...

 miniseries
Miniseries
A miniseries , in a serial storytelling medium, is a television show production which tells a story in a limited number of episodes. The exact number is open to interpretation; however, they are usually limited to fewer than a whole season. The term "miniseries" is generally a North American term...

 in 1994.

Shepard died of leukemia
Leukemia
Leukemia or leukaemia is a type of cancer of the blood or bone marrow characterized by an abnormal increase of immature white blood cells called "blasts". Leukemia is a broad term covering a spectrum of diseases...

 near his home in Pebble Beach
Pebble Beach, California
Pebble Beach is an unincorporated community in Monterey County, California. It lies at an elevation of 3 feet . Pebble Beach is a small coastal resort destination, home to the famous golf course, Pebble Beach Golf Links....

, California on July 21, 1998, (the 29th anniversary of the first moonwalk), two years after being diagnosed with that disease. He was the second person to die who had walked on the Moon. His wife of 53 years, Louise Brewer, died five weeks afterward. Both were cremated, and their ashes were scattered together by a Navy helicopter over Stillwater Cove, in front of their Pebble Beach home.

They had three daughters, Laura (born in 1947), Juliana (born in 1951) and Alice (born in 1951). Alice was Louise's niece, but raised as their own daughter. He also had six grandchildren.

Awards and honors

During his life, Shepard was awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor
Congressional Space Medal of Honor
The Congressional Space Medal of Honor was authorized by the United States Congress in 1969 to recognize "any astronaut who in the performance of his duties has distinguished himself by exceptionally meritorious efforts and contributions to the welfare of the Nation and mankind." The highest award...

 (by President Jimmy Carter
Jimmy Carter
James Earl "Jimmy" Carter, Jr. is an American politician who served as the 39th President of the United States and was the recipient of the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize, the only U.S. President to have received the Prize after leaving office...

 in 1978 for his pioneering Mercury flight); two NASA Distinguished Service Medal
NASA Distinguished Service Medal
The NASA Distinguished Service Medal is the highest award which may be bestowed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the United States...

s (1961 and 1971), the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal
NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal
The NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal is an award of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration that was established in 1991. The medal is awarded to both civilian members of NASA and military astronauts....

, Naval Astronaut Wings
Astronaut Badge
The Astronaut Badge is a badge of the United States, awarded to military and civilian pilots who have completed training and performed a successful spaceflight...

, the Navy Distinguished Service Medal
Navy Distinguished Service Medal
The Navy Distinguished Service Medal is a military award of the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps which was first created in 1919. The decoration is the Navy and Marine Corps equivalent to the Army Distinguished Service Medal, the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal, and the Coast...

, and the Distinguished Flying Cross. He received the Langley Award (highest award of the Smithsonian Institution
Smithsonian Institution
The Smithsonian Institution is an educational and research institute and associated museum complex, administered and funded by the government of the United States and by funds from its endowment, contributions, and profits from its retail operations, concessions, licensing activities, and magazines...

) on May 5, 1964; the Lambert trophy
Lambert Trophy
Lambert Trophy may refer to:*Lambert-Meadowlands Trophy, and the Lambert Cup, annual awards given to the best team in the East in the various divisions of American college football...

; the Iven C. Kincheloe Award
Iven C. Kincheloe Award
The Iven C. Kincheloe Award recognizes outstanding professional accomplishment in the conduct of flight testing. It was established in 1958 by the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and honors the memory of test pilot and Korean War ace Iven C...

; the Cabot Award; the Collier Trophy
Collier Trophy
The Collier Trophy is an annual aviation award administered by the U.S. National Aeronautics Association , presented to those who have made "the greatest achievement in aeronautics or astronautics in America, with respect to improving the performance, efficiency, and safety of air or space...

; and the City of New York Gold Medal for 1971.

He was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame on May 11, 1990.

The Navy named a supply ship, Alan Shepard (T-AKE-3)
USNS Alan Shepard (T-AKE-3)
USNS Alan Shepard is a Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship in the United States Navy. She is named for astronaut Rear Admiral Alan Shepard....

, for him in 2006. A geodesic dome
Geodesic dome
A geodesic dome is a spherical or partial-spherical shell structure or lattice shell based on a network of great circles on the surface of a sphere. The geodesics intersect to form triangular elements that have local triangular rigidity and also distribute the stress across the structure. When...

 was built in his honor in Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Virginia Beach is an independent city located in the Hampton Roads metropolitan area of Virginia, on the Atlantic Ocean at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay...

, Virginia but was demolished in 1994.

A Redstone missile, from which the Redstone booster
Mercury-Redstone Launch Vehicle
The Mercury-Redstone Launch Vehicle, designed for NASA's Project Mercury, was the first American manned space booster. It was used for six sub-orbital Mercury flights from 1960–61; culminating with the launch of the first, and 11 weeks later, the second American in space.A member of the...

 used to launch Shepard aboard Freedom 7 was derived, is on display in the Warren
Warren, New Hampshire
Warren is a town in Grafton County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 904 at the 2010 census. Warren includes the village of Glencliff....

, New Hampshire town square.

The McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center in Concord
Concord, New Hampshire
The city of Concord is the capital of the state of New Hampshire in the United States. It is also the county seat of Merrimack County. As of the 2010 census, its population was 42,695....

, New Hampshire is named after Shepard and Christa McAuliffe
Christa McAuliffe
Christa McAuliffe was an American teacher from Concord, New Hampshire, and was one of the seven crew members killed in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster....

.

Interstate 93
Interstate 93
Interstate 93 is an Interstate Highway in the New England section of the United States. Its southern terminus is in Canton, Massachusetts, in the Boston metropolitan area, at Interstate 95; its northern terminus is near St. Johnsbury, Vermont, at Interstate 91...

 in New Hampshire, from the Massachusetts border to its intersection with Route 101
New Hampshire Route 101
New Hampshire Route 101 is a state-maintained highway in southern New Hampshire extending from Keene to Hampton Beach. It is the major east–west highway in the southern portion of the state....

 in Manchester
Manchester, New Hampshire
Manchester is the largest city in the U.S. state of New Hampshire, the tenth largest city in New England, and the largest city in northern New England, an area comprising the states of Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont. It is in Hillsborough County along the banks of the Merrimack River, which...

, is named in his honor. It passes through his native Derry. Interstate 565
Interstate 565
-External links:***...

 in northern Alabama connecting Decatur
Decatur, Alabama
Decatur is a city in Limestone and Morgan Counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. The city, affectionately known as "The River City", is located in Northern Alabama on the banks of Wheeler Lake, along the Tennessee River. It is the largest city and county seat of Morgan County...

, Alabama and Huntsville
Huntsville, Alabama
Huntsville is a city located primarily in Madison County in the central part of the far northern region of the U.S. state of Alabama. Huntsville is the county seat of Madison County. The city extends west into neighboring Limestone County. Huntsville's population was 180,105 as of the 2010 Census....

, Alabama is officially the Admiral Alan B. Shepard Highway.

His hometown of Derry
Derry, New Hampshire
-Climate:-Demographics:As of the census of 2010, there were 33,109 people, 12,537 households, and 8,767 families residing in the town. The population density was 924.8 people per square mile . There were 13,277 housing units at an average density of 143.2/km²...

 has the nickname Space Town in honor of his career as an astronaut. Following an act of Congress, the Post Office in Derry is designated the Alan B. Shepard, Jr. Post Office Building.

His high school alma mater in Derry, Pinkerton Academy
Pinkerton Academy
Pinkerton Academy is a secondary school in Derry, New Hampshire. It is the largest independent academy in the United States, serving roughly 3,600 students as the high school for the communities of Derry, Hampstead, Chester and sometimes Auburn...

, has a building named after him; and the school team name is the Astros after his career as an astronaut. Alan B. Shepard High School, in Palos Heights
Palos Heights, Illinois
Palos Heights is a city in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 11,260 at the 2000 census, and estimated to be 12,561 in 2005.-Geography:Palos Heights is located at ....

, Illinois, which opened in 1976, was named in his honor. Framed newspapers throughout the school depict various accomplishments and milestones in Shepard's life. Additionally, an autographed plaque commemorates the dedication of the building. The school newspaper is named Freedom 7 and the yearbook is entitled Odyssey. Its television news show is called NASA – News About Shepard Astros.

Other schools which honor his memory include Alan B. Shepard Middle School, Deerfield, Illinois; Alan B. Shepard Middle School, San Antonio, Texas; Alan B. Shepard Elementary School, Bourbonnais, Illinois, Alan B. Shepard Elementary School, Old Bridge, New Jersey and, formerly, Alan B. Shepard Elementary School in Highland Park, Illinois (closed).

Alan Shepard Park in Cocoa Beach
Cocoa Beach, Florida
Cocoa Beach is a city in Brevard County, Florida, United States. The population was 12,482 at the 2000 census. According to the U.S. Census Bureau estimates of 2008, the city had a population of 11,920...

, Florida, a beach-side park south of Cape Canaveral, is named in his honor.

In a 2010 Space Foundation survey, Shepard was ranked as the ninth most popular space hero (tied with astronauts Buzz Aldrin
Buzz Aldrin
Buzz Aldrin is an American mechanical engineer, retired United States Air Force pilot and astronaut who was the Lunar Module pilot on Apollo 11, the first manned lunar landing in history...

 and Gus Grissom).

In 2011, NASA honored Shepard with an Ambassador of Exploration Award, consisting of a moon rock encased in Lucite, for his contributions to the U.S. space program. His family members accepted the award on his behalf during a ceremony on April 28 at the U.S. Naval Academy Museum in Annapolis, Maryland, where it is on permanent display.

On May 4, 2011, the US Postal Service issued a first-class stamp in Shepard's honor—the first US stamp to depict a specific astronaut. The first day of issue ceremony was held at NASA's Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is the visitor center at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. It features exhibits and displays, historic spacecraft and memorabilia, shows, two IMAX theaters, a range of bus tours of the spaceport, and the Shuttle Launch Experience, a simulated ride into...

.

Shepard Technology Award

Each year, the Space Foundation, in partnership with the Astronauts Memorial Foundation and NASA, present the Alan Shepard Technology in Education Award for outstanding contributions by K–12 educators or district-level administrators to educational technology. The award recognizes excellence in the development and application of technology in the classroom or to the professional development of teachers. The recipient demonstrates exemplary use of technology either to foster lifelong learners or to make the learning process easier. Recipients include:
  • 2001 Lori Byrnes
  • 2002 Thomas F. Hunt, Frank E. Waller
  • 2003 Brian Copes
  • 2004 Charles Geach
  • 2005 Ronald F. Dantowitz
  • 2006 Kathy R. Brandon
  • 2007 Luther W. Richardson
  • 2008 Kevin L. Simmons
  • 2009 Ricardo V. Soria
  • 2010 Allen V. Robnett

In media

  • 1965 – The character of Alan Tracy
    Alan Tracy
    Alan Tracy is a fictional character from Gerry Anderson's Supermarionation television show Thunderbirds and the subsequent films Thunderbirds Are GO and Thunderbird 6. The character also appeared in the 2004 live action movie Thunderbirds....

     in the Thunderbirds
    Thunderbirds (TV series)
    Thunderbirds is a British mid-1960s science fiction television show devised by Gerry and Sylvia Anderson and made by AP Films using a form of marionette puppetry dubbed "Supermarionation"...

    was named after him.
  • 1983 film The Right Stuff – played by Scott Glenn
    Scott Glenn
    Theodore Scott Glenn is an American actor. His roles have included Wes Hightower in Urban Cowboy , astronaut Alan Shepard in The Right Stuff ,Emmett in Silverado , Commander Bart Mancuso in The Hunt for Red October , Jack Crawford in The Silence of the Lambs and The Wise Man in Sucker Punch -Early...

  • 1998 HBO TV series From the Earth to the Moon – played by Ted Levine
    Ted Levine
    Frank Theodore "Ted" Levine is an American actor. He is known for his roles as Buffalo Bill in The Silence of the Lambs and Captain Leland Stottlemeyer in the television series Monk.-Early life and career:...

  • 2005 BBC
    BBC
    The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

     TV series Space Race – played by Todd Boyce
    Todd Boyce
    Todd Boyce was born in December 1960 in Columbus, Ohio.He was raised in upstate New York, Germany, Chicago and Brazil. At age 16 Todd moved with his family to Australia where he finished his schooling at Sydney Church of England Grammar School and promptly joined the Australian soap opera The...

  • 2001 opening montage, Star Trek: Enterprise
    Star Trek: Enterprise
    Star Trek: Enterprise is a science fiction television series. It follows the adventures of humanity's first warp 5 starship, the Enterprise, ten years before the United Federation of Planets shown in previous Star Trek series was formed.Enterprise premiered on September 26, 2001...

  • 2002 film Race to Space
    Race to Space
    Race to Space is an American family/drama film. The film was shot on location at Cape Canaveral and Cocoa Beach and Edwards AFB CA in cooperation with NASA and the U.S. Air Force.-Plot:...

    , played by Mark Moses
    Mark Moses
    Mark W. Moses is an American actor, known for his roles of Paul Young on Desperate Housewives and Herman "Duck" Phillips on the AMC series Mad Men.-Life and career:...

  • 2007 – The player character in BioWare
    BioWare
    BioWare is a Canadian video game developer founded in February 1995 by newly graduated medical doctors Ray Muzyka, Greg Zeschuk, and Augustine Yip. BioWare is currently owned by American company Electronic Arts...

    's sci-fi video game series Mass Effect
    Mass Effect
    Mass Effect is an action role-playing game developed by BioWare for the Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows by Demiurge Studios. The Xbox 360 version was released worldwide in November 2007 published by Microsoft Game Studios...

    , is named in his honor.
  • 2011 - Alternative Music Band They Might Be Giants
    They Might Be Giants
    They Might Be Giants is an American alternative rock band formed in 1982 by John Flansburgh and John Linnell. During TMBG's early years Flansburgh and Linnell were frequently accompanied by a drum machine. In the early 1990s, TMBG became a full band. Currently, the members of TMBG are...

     briefly referred to him in their song Can't Keep Johnny Down from their CD Join Us in the following lyric: "Some dude/Hitting golf balls on the moon/Bathroom in his pants/And he thinks he's better than me..."

Gallery

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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