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Vintage Space: Apollo 7 Launches Into Orbit

The 11-day Earth-orbital test flight was sent into space October 11, 1968
Related: Photos, Space
(AP-PHOTO/NASA-HO)
On Oct. 11, 1968, the United States carried out its Apollo 7 human spaceflight mission, the first of the nation's Apollo programs to deliver a crew into space. A year earlier, a cabin fire killed the Apollo 1 crew; Apollo 7 was the first space flight to carry astronauts into low-Earth orbit after that deadly mission. The Apollo 7 crew was commanded by Walter M. Schirra, and included Command Module Pilot Donn F. Eisele, and Lunar Module Pilot R. Walter Cunningham.

The 11-day mission launched from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and created a national stir when the Apollo 7 crew became the first to transmit a live television broadcast from an American spacecraft.

The above image shows a view of the Atlantic Ocean off coast of Cape Kennedy, Fla., with the Florida coastline from Flagler Beach south to Vero Beach visible. Below is an image from the televised broadcast of the crew from space.


Astronauts Walter M. Schirra Jr. (on right), mission commander; and Donn F. Eisele, command module pilot; are seen in the first live television transmission from space. (Apollo 7 TV transmission Photo credit: NASA)

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