A Backup Crew pressed into action.Gene Cernan's Gemini 9A Flown Complete Flight Plan with his original handwritten notations. Consists of 150 printed pages of 10.5" x 8" bound with three loose-leaf binder rings between two heavy board covers. The front cover has a part number of "CF55069-1", the serial number of "10", and the title "Flight Plan Book". On the back cover, Cernan has written, "Flown on Gemini IX Gene Cernan". Both covers have strips of Velcro attached.
The Gemini 9 mission in June 1966 represented an unusual flight that combined elements of great success with high doses of frustration, and near catastrophe. The flight would become one of the only missions in space history to be flown by the spacecraft's back-up crew. Just four months before the mission, prime crewmembers Elliott See and Charles Bassett were killed in the crash of their T-38 training aircraft. Ironically, they crashed right into the building where the Gemini 9 capsule was being built. This immediately pressed into service the back-up crew of Tom Stafford and Gene Cernan. The dramatic change of events not only led to Cernan becoming the youngest American to fly in space (to that date), but also in Stafford having to make an unprecedented second flight in only six months. Due to the rotation system that NASA used, this change in crew would also later impact who would make up the crew of Apollo 11, the first lunar landing.
During the mission, renamed Gemini 9A, Stafford and Cernan conducted numerous experiments, performed several rendezvous' with the infamous "Angry Alligator" target vehicle (early practice for the maneuver that was necessary for the Apollo moon missions to succeed), and Cernan would become the second American to walk in space. After the completion of 47 orbits, the crew made a near perfect reentry and landing less than a half-mile from their planned impact point. This flight plan was an integral part of that important mission. Flight plans are rarely sold complete and intact; they are usually separated and sold by the page. When you add that it is from Gene Cernan, one of our most notable astronauts and a moonwalker, it makes it that much more important an item and suitable for the finest collection. From the personal collection of Captain Gene Cernan accompanied by written authentication by Cernan.
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