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ASF Celebrates Apollo 13’s 45th Anniversary

apollo13_insignia The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex (KSCVC) was the site of a recent celebration of the space program’s greatest heroes. On Saturday, April 11, 2015, supporters of the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation (ASF) gathered in the company of the astronauts, flight directors, and support crew who ensured the safe return of the Apollo 13 crew.

Presented by AirScan, Inc. and Embraer, the gala took place under the Saturn V rocket suspended in KSCVC’s remarkable Apollo/Saturn V Center. A candid panel discussion was the highlight of the evening and featured Apollo 13 Commander James Lovell and Lunar Module Pilot Fred Haise, backup Lunar Module Pilot Charlie Duke, support crew Vance Brand, Joe Kerwin, and Jack Lousma, and flight directors Gerry Griffin, Gene Kranz, and Glynn Lunney. These space icons shared their stories and reflected on the mission that brought global attention to the bravery and determination of those who made up our nation’s space program. Astronauts Buzz Aldrin, Dan Brandenstein, Bob Cabana, and Tom Stafford were also in attendance.

Tom Fotopulos of AirScan, Inc. challenged ASF to raise $45,000 for its Scholarship Program in honor of Apollo 13’s 45th Anniversary. During the course of the evening, he announced that he would match up to $22,500 of that total. ASF Visionary Circle Founder Steve Wirth of Page, Wolfberg & Wirth, LLC, stepped up with a donation of $10,000. Others in attendance – including Embraer, Lockheed Martin, and several individual supporters – quickly joined the challenge. The goal of $45,000 was successfully met within ten minutes of announcement.

Watch the panel below or on YouTube, courtesy of NASA/KSC TV:

ASF is grateful for the astronauts, special guests, sponsors, and patrons who joined us for the evening. Your attendance, interest, and generous donations in support of the Astronuat Scholarship Program, make the mission to fuel the best and brightest minds across the country possible.

We would also like to thank KSCVC / Delaware North, the Hilton Cocoa Beach Oceanfront, Fineline Printing, and photographers John C. Karjanis and Steve Torres for their outstanding facilitation of this event.

Thanks to our sponsors!

AirscanEmbraer
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Delaware North Hilton Cocoa Beach