Noted space expert and author, Frederick Ordway III has passed away on 1 July 2014 at the age of 87. Having gained an interest in spaceflight from an early age, Ordway graduated from Harvard in 1949 with a bachelor of science, and later attended the Sorbonne in Paris. After working for a number of rocket and aerospace concerns, he was persuade by Wernher Von Braun to join him at NASA’s Marschall Spaceflight Centre in Huntsville, Alabama working on the Apollo programme.
Ordway had a parallel career as the author of books on spaceflight – some co-written with Von Braun – and later became a technical consultant on Stanley Kubrick’s seminal science fiction film 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). The film is loosely based on the short story The Sentinel by Arthur C. Clarke – a friend of Ordway’s.
Post script: On the anniversary of the first moon landing, the late Neil Armstrong, first man to set foot on the Moon, has had a building named after him. The Operations and Checkout Building at the Kennedy Space Center was named after the accomplished astronaut. At the naming ceremony were his Apollo 11 crewmates, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins as well as the Apollo 13 mission commander, Jim Lovell.