Our original flight plan was to rendezvous and dock with an Agena target vehicle on October 25, 1965. However, the Agena failed to reach orbit on that date and our Gemini Titan launch was cancelled. Our medallions were minted prior to October, with GTA-6 (Gemini-Titan Agena 6) at the top and our last names at the lower left and right. A Gemini spacecraft following the dotted path of the Agena in the shape of a large “6” was symbolic of this first rendezvous flight.
Within days of the Agena failure, NASA and our contractor team devised a plan to rendezvous with Gemini 7, scheduled for an early December launch. With all this extra planning and training, we were unable to change the medallions to reflect the new mission plans. We carried them into space as originally minted on December 15, and to make the story complete, they of course were with us on December 12 when our Titan launch vehicle engines shut-down just seconds before lift-off. Wally Schirra kept a cool head, and did not command an abort via our ejection seats. Thus we were able to launch and rendezvous with Gemini 7 just three days later.”
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