As the red smoke cleared, Al saw widening holes in one of their parachutes, collapsing it into a useless strip of cloth. “We’ve got a streamer on one,” Al reported.
On Hadley Plain, at 171:37 GET, right on schedule, Falcon’s engine lit, hurling the ascent stage upward in an impressive flurry of dust and debris, captured for the first time on camera and transmitted live to a world-wide audience.
After being cooped up together so closely with his fellow astronauts inside Endeavor, Worden enjoyed stretching out for his solo flight. Now he really got to fly.
“We pray for one last landing
On the globe that gave us birth;
Let us rest our eyes on the fleecy skies
And the cool, green hills of Earth.” Robert A. Heinlein