The NASA announcer got a bit poetic welcoming Endeavour home this evening – and why not? How often do you go into a situation knowing that you’re speaking to history? Most of the time, we recognize history in hindsight, and it’s pieced together from the banal comments and reactions that were of the time.
But not this time. This time, everyone knew that this was it. This was the 25th and final flight for Endeavour, the penultimate landing for the entire US space shuttle program. History. She has spent 299 days in space, orbited Earth 4,671 times, and traveled 122,883,151 miles. Everything about this was historic – so why not take a minute to wax poetic, not only to the returning astronauts and watching and listening viewers, but to whomever will be writing this history down, in some future history of the space program book? If nothing else, the act of speaking the words put them to paper (and print and digital and all sorts of media, I’m sure), archiving them for future curious souls.
“It’s sad to see her land for the last time, but she really has a great legacy.” -Commander Mark Kelly