Splashdown! The Ship That Picked Up the Apollo 11 Astronauts (article/photos)

24th July 2009, 07:55
The USS Hornet was on hand 40 years ago to pick up the Apollo 11 astronauts after their Columbia Command Module splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on July 24, 1969.

Today, the aircraft carrier is preserved as a museum in Alameda, California. Its main deck is littered with historic warplanes and space artifacts including an Apollo command module and Mobile Quarantine Facility from subsequent missions, pictured below. The first footsteps the Apollo 11 crew took on Earth after walking on the moon are traced on the deck.



10th August 2009, 21:30
I have taken the tour of the USS Hornet shortly after berthing at the Old Naval Air Station Alameda. The ship was in very good condition considering lack of use for many years. The volunteers were doing a very good job preserving the flight deck and the exterior of the ship. The interior was being electrically check by naval reservest before any of the lighting systems were turned on. The interior size of this ship is very decieving, but well worth the 2to 3 hour self-guided tour through the work spaces, berthing areas, and the other compartments. The engine room was the only space where there was a guided tour.

The organization is doing a great job with this ship.