Only Three People In The World Could Fold Apollo’s Parachutes

Samuel Reason - December 20th, 2019

When Apollo 11 astronauts were traveling to the moon in July 1969, it required the invention and development of some truly groundbreaking technology. And it was all being produced at a furious pace, it was after all the Space War between The United States of America and the USSR.

We saw the invention of the world’s biggest rocket, the smallest one, fastest on and even the smallest computers at the time. Not to mention the operations needed high-speed data networks, spacesuits, space food, and a moon buggy. The issue was that during the 1960s, the manufacturing industry had not caught up with the technology that was being produced. This meant that things you would have believed were built using robotics and machinery, were assembled entirely by hand.

This meant there was a small force of crucial workers in NASA on Earth, some were so specialized they were guarded at all times by secret services. Because if they were ever captured or killed, then NASA’s billion-dollar operations would all be let down. You could think of these specialized manufacturing workers as a single point of failure for NASA, they were perhaps the most important assembly workers ever to exist on Earth.

Spacesuits were for example created by Playtex, bringing together 21 layers of nested fabric that needed to still be flexible enough to do all the work on the moon. Each layer was sewn by an expert, as each layer had to be assembled delicately and with immense precision.

Perhaps the most important part of a space mission? How to get home, back down to Earth safely. During the time of Apollo 11, they used parachutes, which were all 7,200 square feet of fabric, that is pretty much enough to cover the floor space of three typical U.S sized houses. The problem was only three people in the world knew how to fold them correctly for deployment. Only three people were trained by the Federal Aviation Administration to do this: Norma Cretal, Buzz Corey and Jimmy Calunga.

As a result, these three people were never allowed to ride in the same car or plane together, NASA feared so much that an accident could wipe out there knowledge of how to correctly fold an Apollo parachute.

Next Article
  • The Time A Marine Called Customer Support Mid Firefight

    Known as one of the most reliable sniper rifles ever to be manufactured, the Barrett M107 .50-caliber rifle is a firearm that has been developed specifically for the United States of America’s Army modern fight against terrorism. It was officially adopted in 2002 due to its 2,000-meter range, along with the design that enabled the...

    Read More
  • The Incredible Story Of The Two-Headed Boy From Bengal

    In 1790 a surgeon known as Everard Home wrote a series of medical articles about an extremely rare medical condition, which he was certain had never been recorded before. Of course, we now know he was writing about a two-headed boy that he had found in Bengal. His medical journals contain sketches and drawings, along...

    Read More
  • The Greatest Last Stand Ever Recorded In History

    The battle of Saragarhi is known to many historians as the greatest last stand ever, when it comes to war and battles. It is an event that happened on the 12th September 1897 that saw just 21 Sikh soldiers stand their ground against over 10,000 men. It was a British outpost surrounded by Afghan tribesmen,...

    Read More
  • The 1978 Tug Of War Tragedy

    On June 23, 1978, in a sleepy Pennsylvania suburb the whole alumni of Harrisburg middle school turned up with one mission in mind: break the tug of war world record. Over 2,300 students lined up in the schoolyard, with the idea of setting a new Guinness World Record. They were going after the largest tug...

    Read More
  • The Greatest Sniper Of World War I

    During the bloodshed and chaos that was the First World War, hundreds of Canadians signed up to fight for their country overseas, mostly young men. There was one man though that stood out from the crowd and put his name down in the history books as one of the deadliest snipers ever to have shot...

    Read More
  • The Rainbow Mountain Of Peru

    Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain is a geological wonder and also a spiritual place of worship for many, the crazy part is it was only discovered about four years ago. Though it has been a place of worship for centuries, it seems tourists never saw it and nobody uploaded a photo to the internet. Now many are...

    Read More
  • Santos Dumont The Magnificent Inventor Of Flying Machines

    A famous Brazilian inventor by the name of Santos Dumont is credited for creating numerous flying machines in one decade. He designed piloted balloons, dirigibles, gliders, hydroplanes, and aircraft - he is one of the world’s biggest aeronautical pioneers and certainly known as being the most creative. All the while taking major risks when testing...

    Read More
  • The Funny Looking Punt Gun Nearly Wiped Out Duck Populations

    Use of what is known as the punt gun, a comically large looking gun, nearly wiped out the duck and waterfowl populations of America in a short amount of time. This massive looking gun was destructive on another level, especially if you were a duck hunter. If we look back through the pages of history...

    Read More