USNA Honorable Graduates - Astronauts

The Naval Academy has produced more astronauts than any other institution in the nation.

Launch of Freedom 7, the first American manned suborbital space flight. Astronaut Alan Shepard aboard, the Mercury-Redstone (MR-3) rocket is launched from Pad 5.

This view of the orbiting Gemini 7 spacecraft was taken from the Gemini 6 spacecraft during their historic rendezvous mission in space. The two spacecrafts were approximately 29 ft. apart when this picture was made.

The third Saturn V launch vehicle (SA-503) for the Apollo 8 mission lifted off from Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center on December 21, 1968. The first manned Saturn V vehicle with a crew of three astronauts, Frank Borman, James A. Lovell, Jr., and William Anders, escaped Earth’s gravity, traveled to the lunar vicinity, and orbited the Moon.

The huge, 363-feet tall Apollo 16 space vehicle was launched from the Kennedy Space Center, April 16, 1972, on a lunar landing mission. Aboard the Apollo 16 spacecraft were astronauts John W. Young, commander; Thomas K. Mattingly II, command module pilot; and Charles M. Duke Jr., lunar module pilot.

Astronaut Charles M. Duke Jr. is photographed collecting lunar samples during the first Apollo 16 extravehicular activity at the Descartes landing site. This picture, looking eastward, was taken by Astronaut John W. Young, commander. The parked Lunar Roving Vehicle can be seen in the left background.

The Apollo Soyuz Test Project's (ASTP) NASA Apollo/Saturn 18 space vehicle is launched from Pad B, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center, Florida, at 3:50 p.m., July 15, 1975. The Soviet spacecraft (Soyuz 19) was launched seven and one-half hours before the American ASTP/Apollo-Saturn 18 liftoff.

STS-41B Challenger Mission Specialist Bruce McCandless II ventured further away (320 feet) from the confines and safety of his ship than any previous astronaut ever has. This space first was made possible by the Manned Maneuvering Unit or MMU, a nitrogen jet propelled backpack.

STS-49 Landing at Edwards with First Drag Chute Landing (May 16, 1992)

A Great Blue Heron seems oblivious to the trememdous spectacle of light and sound generated by a Shuttle liftoff, as the Space Shuttle Columbia soars skyward from Launch Pad 39B. Columbia lifted off at 9:53:00 a.m. EDT, October 20, 1995. On board are a crew of seven and the U.S. Microgravity Laboratory-2

Shuttle and Mir Docking (September 1996). STS-79 brought back to Earth U.S. astronaut Shannon Lucid after her 188 days in space. The mission conducted the first U.S. Shuttle-Mir crew exchange

Backdropped against white clouds and blue ocean waters, the International Space Station (ISS) moves away from the Space Shuttle Discovery. The U.S.- built Unity node (top) and the Russian-built Zarya or FGB module (with the solar array panels deployed) were joined during a December 1998 mission.

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Xenon lights illuminate space shuttle Discovery as it makes its nighttime trek, known as

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