National Geographic : 1962 Jun
Seventeen seconds, and the second rocket is burning out; about five seconds to go. Twenty-two seconds and the third one has burned out. The needles settle down. Glenn can look up and out the window now and see that he is still go ing toward the east. His feeling of backing up dur ing retrofire was pure illusion: the retrorockets slowed him down only slightly. He is still going at more than 17,000 miles an hour toward his landing area in the Atlantic. Keep your retropack on until you pass Texas, Schirra repeats. That's affirmative. Check. Pretty good-looking flight from what all we've seen. Roger. Everything went pretty good, except for all this ASCS problem. It looked like your attitude held pretty well. Did you have to back it up at all? Oh, yes, quite a bit. Yeah, I had a lot of trouble with it. 04:34:15 To Glenn's right the next sequence light comes on red, telling him that his retro package has not been jettisoned. Jettisonretro is red. I'm hold ing on to it, he reports. Good head. I'll tell you, there's no doubt about it when the retros fire. Gathered thatfrom your com ments. Do you have a time for going to jettison retro? Texas will give you that mes sage. From outer space to inner space, Glenn floats weightless in a different medium while spearfishing off Grand Turk between debriefing sessions. The interlude was not with out drama: Fellow astronaut Carpenter rescued a skin div er who had lost consciousness 80 feet down. Glenn and oth ers hauled him into a boat.