Haze obscures the final launch of shuttle Atlantis on July 8, 2011, as seen from Cocoa, Florida. Photo by Chris Kridler, chriskridler.com
Shuttle Atlantis zooms into a cloud deck on its final flight, on July 8, 2011, as seen from Cocoa, Florida. Photo by Chris Kridler, chriskridler.com
I didn’t have a special view of Atlantis’ final launch today -it was from Cocoa, and hindered by haze and a deck of clouds. But it still had that import of history, and a tear came to my eye when I heard shuttle launch director Mike Leinbach wish the crew well as he bid farewell to the shuttles. The mission is still ahead, but Kennedy Space Center has launched its last orbiter. The crowds came out by the thousands to wish it well – and now a lot of them are driving home.
Manatees frolic in Cocoa before the July 8, 2011, shuttle launch. Photo by Chris Kridler, chriskridler.com