Apollo 13 Deaths

Even before the first U. S. astronaut entered space in 1961, planning for a centralized facility to communicate with the spacecraft and monitor its performance had begun, for the most part the brainchild of Christopher C. Kraft, who became NASA’s first flight director. During John Glenn’s Mercury Friendship 7 flight in February 1962 (the first crewed orbital flight by the U. S. ), Kraft was overruled by NASA managers. He was vindicated by post-mission analysis, and implemented a rule that during the mission, the flight director’s word was absolute —to overrule him, NASA would have to fire him on the spot. Flight directors during Apollo had a one-sentence job description, “The flight director may take any actions necessary for crew safety and mission success. ”