SPACE HISTORY: NASA Introduced Mercury Astronaut Team To An Adoring Nation In April 1959

By  //  March 19, 2017

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"Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please. The rules for this briefing are very simple. In about sixty seconds we will give you the announcement that you have all been waiting for: the names of the seven volunteers who will become the Mercury Astronaut Team." The anticipation had been building, and on April 9 in 1959, NASA publicly introduced the Mercury Astronaut Team. (NASA.gov image)

TRUE AMERICAN HEROES: The Mercury 7 Astronaut Team included Malcolm S. Carpenter, Leroy G. Cooper, John H. Glenn Jr., Virgil I. Grissom, Walter M. Schirra Jr., Alan B. Shepard Jr. and Donald K. Slayton. (NASA.gov image)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – The anticipation had been building, and on April 9 in 1959, NASA publicly introduced the Mercury Astronaut Team.

“Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please. The rules for this briefing are very simple. In about 60 seconds we will give you the announcement that you have all been waiting for: the names of the seven volunteers who will become the Mercury Astronaut Team.”

“It is my pleasure to introduce to you and I consider it a very real honor, gentlemen, from your right, Malcolm S. Carpenter; Leroy G. Cooper; John H. Glenn, Jr.; Virgil I. Grissom; Walter M. Schirra, Jr.; Alan B. Shepard, Jr.; and Donald K. Slayton, are the nation’s Mercury astronauts.”

These men were soon to become household names and genuine heroes.

VIDEO: NASA Astronaut, John Glenn Honored At Kennedy Space Center Visitor ComplexRelated Story:
VIDEO: NASA Astronaut, John Glenn Honored At Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

The Mercury flights proved that humans could live and work in space, and paved the way for the Gemini and Apollo programs as well as for all further human spaceflight.

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