San Mateo, CA
Photograph - Photography
Throughout Endeavour's Fly Out event, there was a touch of bittersweet in the air. Certainly, we were all fairly jazzed to see her take to the skies once again atop her SCA, but knowing that she would not be coming back to the place that she had called home for her 18-year career tempered the excitement. That aura of sadness seemed especially evident in the NASA astronauts and employees that were present. Endeavour was an old friend, almost like a family member as I heard one employee put it. She and the Shuttle Program as a whole would be sorely missed.
The weather seemed to highlight the mood. Low lying overcast punctuated by patches of blue prevailed as Endeavour and the SCA roared off Rwy 15 at the Shuttle Landing Facility. It wasn't until she was off for her initial bouts of flyovers that I had a moment to contemplate the emotions that ran thick at KSC. Indeed for them, this was a final farewell to the orbiter.
September 20th, 2012
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