TLS signed “Ken,” one page, 8 x 10.5, NASA letterhead, March 1973. Letter to Harold G. Collins of the Mission Support Office in the Kennedy Space Center, in full: "Many thanks for the innumerable efforts you put into the flight crew support. Your efficiency, thoroughness and courtesy made my two stays at KSC most pleasant. Anyone who can make a tour of duty in quarantine pleasant, must possess a magic trait. The cheerful 'can-do' attitude of all those fine folks who comprised our KSC office is the most eloquent testimony, I can imagine, to the calibre of leadership enjoyed. I am particularly appreciative of your efforts to honor and your patience with my personal quirks, especially in the area of privacy. My personal recollections of our trip to the moon have faded with a frustrating rapidity. The only memories of this magnificent effort which have not been dulled are those of the sincere personal responsibility and dedication which characterized our personnel. To have shared in this experience will always be my most prized moment. Thanks again and best wishes in all of your future endeavors." In fine condition. Before he retired from NASA in 1973, Harold ‘Hal’ Collins proved himself an integral member of the agency’s landmark programs. During the early days of Mercury, he became personally acquainted with the ‘original seven’ as a contracting officer, and then went on to assist any number of moonwalkers during his tenure as chief of mission support for the Apollo program. While John Young and Charlie Duke traversed the moon's surface during the Apollo 16 mission, Command Module Pilot Ken Mattingly orbited inside the CSM Casper alone for five days, amassing a total of 64 revolutions in lunar orbit. On the trip home, roughly 192,000 miles from Earth, Mattingly performed a 'deep-space' EVA, retrieving several film cassettes from the CSM's SIM bay and setting up a biological experiment, the Microbial Ecology Evaluation Device. From The Bill Lende Collection.
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