Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream by Tanya Lee Stone PDF

By Tanya Lee Stone

They'd the proper stuff. They defied the prejudices of the time. they usually blazed a path for generations of ladies to follow.

What does it take to be an astronaut? Excellence at flying, braveness, intelligence, resistance to emphasize, most sensible actual form — any list would come with those. but if the USA created NASA in 1958, there has been one other unstated rule: you needed to be a guy. this is the story of 13 ladies who proved that they weren't in simple terms as tricky because the hardest guy but in addition courageous adequate to problem the govt.. They have been blocked by means of prejudice, jealousy, and the scrawled word of 1 of the main strong males in Washington. yet even supposing the Mercury thirteen ladies didn't make it into area, they didn't lose, for his or her instance empowered younger ladies to take their position within the sky, piloting jets and commanding house pills. nearly ASTRONAUTS is the tale of 13 precise pioneers of the gap age.

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Jerrie held her breath. She knew she could likely hold it for one minute. She unbuckled. Unhooked. Untangled. Made sure her suit didn’t catch on anything — a handle here, a knob there. Jerrie later described what she had to do. ” She did not get disoriented. She found the hatch and opened it. She was out. Too Good to Be True 47 The Dilbert Dunker sequence— the capsule speeds toward the pool (left), hits the water (right), then turns upside down at the bottom of the pool. 48 ALMOST ASTRONAUTS Then came the easy part — swimming to the surface.

Some people would sing or be overwhelmed by childhood memories and start to cry. Others would talk incessantly about the people in their lives or moments that bothered them or 24 ALMOST ASTRONAUTS surprised them or made them happy, sad, or angry. Some ticked off grocery lists. Anything to pass the time, mark the time, in whatever way they could. Isolation testing was considered important from the beginning of the space program, since being in space is probably the most challenging form of isolation a human being will ever encounter.

She had had a good night’s sleep. She felt ready to be alone with herself. Down, down, down to the basement she went. Once alone in the tank room, she settled in to the water. It was slightly salty, which made it easier for her to float. A gentle swirl of circulation filtered the water, eliminating the need for bathroom breaks. “All set,” she said. The microphone hanging just above the water’s surface alerted Shurley’s graduate assistant Cathryn Walters, who was monitoring her every word next door.

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