DescriptionApollo 13 Flown Official 14K Gold Astronaut Wives Pin Directly from the Personal Collection of JoAnn (Mrs. Jerry) Carr, with LOAs. A 29mm diameter gold disk with a clasp on the reverse which is marked 14K. On the front, against a field of parallel horizontal lines, is a design that matches the gold Astronaut Pin. Traditionally, NASA awarded a silver pin to any astronaut who completed training and they received a gold pin only when they flew into space. To those who have recently watched the ABC-TV series The Astronaut Wives Club (based on the book by Lily Koppel by the same title) know, the wives of the early NASA astronauts formed a close bond, supporting one another through situations that only they could identify with. As the letter from JoAnn Carr mentions, they discussed having a "wives" pin made at one of their monthly get-togethers. It ended up that Gordon Cooper and the other astronauts actually had one designed and manufactured, presenting them to their wives at a dinner party. Before LMP Fred Haise left on the Apollo 13 mission, he asked astronaut and LRV developer Gerald Carr to look after his family should he not return. Haise included Mrs. Carr's pin in his PPK during this near-disastrous mission, flying it around the moon and safely back to earth. Letters from both Haise and JoAnn Carr are included with this lot (transcriptions below). This is a special and unique memento worthy of inclusion in the finest of collections. Light wear, excellent.
Included with this lot is a signed Letter of Authenticity from JoAnn Carr. It reads, in full: "This is an astronaut wives club pin. At one of our monthly coffees we discussed having a wives pin made. Louise Shepard (wife of astronaut Alan Shepard Mercury mission Freedom 7, Apollo 14) talked to her jeweler about designing a pin for the wives. In the meantime, the guys, spearheaded by Gordon Cooper (Gemini V, Mercury mission Faith 7) had a pin designed for us based on their lapel pin. This pin was presented to the wives at a dinner-dance planned by the guys, quite unprecedented given their schedule. I hereby certify that this pin has been in my possession since presented to me by Colonel Gerald P Carr (Jerry, Commander of Skylab 3), with a side trip on the ill-fated Apollo 13 mission carried for Jerry by Fred Haise. To my knowledge this pin was not a tradition carried on by the shuttle astronauts."
Also included with this lot is a signed Letter of Provenance from Mission Lunar Module Pilot Fred W. Haise to JoAnn Carr, It reads, in full: "You may not remember, but I asked your husband, Jerry, to look after things for my family should I not make it back on the Apollo 13 Mission. We reviewed all the pertinent documentation, such as a life insurance policy, to make it easier in settling those sort of things. I did include in my Personal Preference Kit (PPK) a pin that Jerry provided to be given to you on our return... he was optimistic! Your pin almost didn't make it back, as at just under 56 hours into the mission, an oxygen tank explosion resulted in a major loss of all our electrical power to the Command and Service Module... the "Mother Ship". This event caused a scrub of the lunar landing and forced us to move into the Lunar Module in order to survive a four day journey around the moon and return back to earth. The knowledge gained from the many hours that Jerry and I had spent at Grumman testing Lunar Modules paid off. Many individuals from NASA and our contractor team worked around the clock to ensure our safe return, as well as my PPK with your pin enclosed."
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