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Peggy Newcomb – Curtis the Cat and Outer Space

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Will adventures ever stop?  Let’s hope not!  But I will say, I had one yesterday that I did not expect.  “Missy” got an invitation to the 2018 Aviation and Aeronautical Legislative Reception held in Richmond at the Virginia Library.  We had a great time (I’d call it an adventure) despite the no parking zone, the cold rain and a dead battery brought on by flashing lights having been left on too long while she unloaded all the stuff!  I’m getting ahead of my story!  Missy was invited to attend this monumental event because Mr. John’s book, A Bunch of Plumbers, was being featured by the Virginia AeroSpace Business Association. All the stuff I referred to that was unloaded was copies of the book, posters and flyers to pass out, and…a photograph of the first earth picture taken from outer space taken on August 23, 1966!!  Just think about that,,,is that impressive or what.  Mr John features that in his book in the chapter called the Forgotten Photo of the Century.
Mr. John’s book is not about plumbers at all.  It is full of stories about his work on the Lunar Orbiter Missions(1966) and the Viking Missions (1976).He was quite a story teller and always entertained people with the exciting events, (like when the mission directer hung up on the president of the United States}. “Missy” always called him her social butterfly!!  (Mr. John that is, not the president!) Oops, I think that was a family secret!!
These missions were thought to be impossible by many, but these engineers proved everyone wrong because all five of the Lunar Orbiter Missions (to photograph Landing sites for the Apollo Mission) were 100% successful as were the two Viking Missions to put a lander on Mars.  I bet you didn’t know that our first landing on Mars was in 1976!!   Don’t forget these missions were accomplished with Slide Rules (do you know what that is?), butcher paper and punch card computers the size of a warehouse….no computers like you have setting on your desk today.  You can go on youtube and see Mr John talking about the missions: v=D1HnrZ9t5dQ&  And/Or you can read his book and see photos of all of this neat stuff!  Actually you can do both!!
I bet you didn’t know that I was so smart!!  Stick with me, Babes!!
Love and Purr, Curtis
To be continued—The Adventure Never Stops!!
Peggy Newcomb is a retired chemistry teacher, an artist, poet and writer.  She is the wife of John Newcomb: author of the book:
A Bunch of Plumbers..which is not about plumbers at all!  Obviously it is John’s memoir about his adventures as the
Mission Design engineer for the Lunar Orbiter Missions (5) and the Viking Missions (2).
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