Saturday, February 23, 2008

Meeting the man with the "Right Stuff"...

Awhile back I had the pleasure of meeting Gene Kranz the former NASA mission control flight director on the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space launches. Being a certifiable space race history nut, the chance to meet and shoot Gene was a very exciting assignment. Boise Office Products had hired Gene to give a motivational speech to their sales staff and customers. I was on hand to shoot the event and the "meet and greet" shots. Gene was very gracious and answered lots of questions. Most of you who aren't familiar with the space program, probably remember the movie, Apollo 13. Ed Harris played the role of Gene Kranz who acted very calmly and worked hard with his team to "think the problem through" after hearing that now infamous radio transmission, "Houston, we've had a problem"...His quick thinking and decision making helped save the lives of the 3 astronauts onboard.

I have a huge amount of respect for this Presidential Medal of Freedom winner and what he has accomplished in his life. And though I've met a number of celebrities over the years on assignments, Eugene Kranz is one of the most memorable personalities and someone whom I really look up to. And though I don't dig his trademark haircut, Gene truly has the "Right Stuff" many times over. Thanks Gene, for a great shoot and for your dedicated service to our country!

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