Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Stafford, McCasland, Zarrow Named to Hall

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Stafford, McCasland, Zarrow Named to Hall

Article excerpt

Former astronaut Thomas P. Stafford of Weatherford led a delegation of three men being inducted into the Oklahoma Commerce and Industry Hall of Honor Wednesday.

Others inducted into the hall, which was established in 1983 with the opening of Oklahoma City University's Noble Center for Competitive Enterprise, were the late Thomas Howard McCasland and Henry Zarrow.

They were inducted into the hall during a luncheon ceremony at the Marriott Hotel.

Stafford, a retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant general, joined the astronaut program in 1962 and at one time had accumulated more time in space than any other American.

His first space flight was aboard Gemini VI in which he performed the first rendezvous in space, a forerunner to a manned Lunar landing. Stafford later commanded Gemini IX and performed an early type of rendezvous that would be used in the Apollo missions.

Some of the United States' first space walk missions also occurred with Stafford at the control of the space craft.

He also commanded Apollo X in 1969, the first flight of the lunar module to the moon. During that mission he also mapped what was to become the first landing size and then accomplished the first rendezvous around the moon.

Stafford used both radar and photography equipment to map the landing site.

After serving as head of the astronaut office for several years, Stafford made what was perhaps his most famous flight, the Apollo Soyuz Test Project in 1975. Besides this being the first flight of an international crew, this also was the first space flight of Donald K. "Deke" Slayton, the only member of the original Mercury 7 astronauts who did not fly solo into space.

The Apollo Soyuz flight had Americans and Soviet spacemen working together for several days both on the ground before the flight, during the flight and afterwards.

After this flight, Stafford returned to Air Force assignments as a major general in 1975 and commanded the Air Force Test Center. He later was deputy chief of staff for research, development and acquisitions. He personally directed the start of the F-117A Stealth Fight program and wrote initial specifications for the B-2 Stealth bomber. …

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