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Methusela19152290 karma

No. But they did. Jim Lovell and Tom Hanks visited here in Washington after the movie was made, and I met up with Jim Lovell again. As it happens, Jim Lovell was President of the National Eagle Scout Association, and we met at the National Press Club because they were promoting the movie. Jim recognized me from NASA. I told him that I hadn't slept for about seven days while he was coming back.

All the engineers and everybody else at NASA in Houston were working hard at recovering the moonshot, and they were in real trouble, weren't sure they could get it back. They got a phone call from a grad student at MIT who said he knew how to get them back. They put engineers on it, tested it out, by God it worked. Slingshotting them around the moon. They successfully did. They wanted to present the grad student to the President and the public, but they found him and he was a real hippy type - long hair and facial hair. NASA was straight-laced, and this was different than they expected, so they withdrew the invitation to the student. I think that is a disgrace.

Methusela19151907 karma

I was in Tinian, and I get a phone call 2 o'clock one morning, and this army Colonel gets on the phone and tells me that he doesn't speak any Korean and none of the Koreans he works with speak any English and that he was going crazy. He wanted to know if I could get together a poker game so that he could speak some English. And I said sure thing Colonel, what sort of thing would you like and he said table stakes pot limit 5 card draw. So he came over and he was the US representative with this Korean division. So anyway he came over and we're playing poker. There were eight people in the game and seven stayed in this hand. I had a pair of deuces. And I stayed. And I took three cards and drew another pair of deuces. And the betting started. Of the seven that were in, two had straights, two had flushes, two had full houses. The Colonel who had called me and was sitting next to me had three aces and a pair of something else. The first two to drop were the two that had straights, all their money was in the pot, the two with flushes put all their money in the pot. They all had terrific hands, every one of them had winning hands, but I had the best. I won $7000 from that hand. The best part is that the Colonel is raising and he says "everything on the table plays doesn't it?" I say "Yes Colonel, why?" He had his hand on the table. He said "ok I'm putting this watch in, plus a two hundred dollar raise." I said "Colonel, I don't want your watch." He said, "you're not going to get my watch." I wore that watch for about 12 years.

Methusela19151745 karma

Well, I went on leave to NY, and, I had one hell of a time. Wine, women, and song. And I was about to leave and go back to my job and I told my sister "You've got a job for the rest of this war. If I survive it, I want you to find the gal I'd like to marry." I said "you know all my specifications." She said "I don't have to find her, I already know her!" I said "tell me about her!" So the first thing she did is show me that picture. And I looked at the picture and said "oh no, nobody that looks as good as that is going to be very sharp, I don't think I want to meet that girl, I don't think I'd like being married to her." My sister said "wait a second" and she got a letter from my wife to my neice who at that time was 3 months old and it was fabulous. And I read the letter and said "I can't believe this." I read the letter, and looked at the picture, and read the letter again, and looked at the picutre again and said "ok I'll marry the girl." And this was before I even met her. So I went off to my regular job which was in Drewfield, Florida and I wrote her and she wrote back, and so first we started writing once every couple of weeks and before we knew it we were writing once every day. And so we said we had to meet each other. And she was in the marine core, sergeant in the marine core, and worked down in Atlanta, GA and I was a first lieutenant in the army working out of Tampa Florida, so we figured out a place that was halfway between both of em, and we met in Jacksonville, Florida, and the first time we saw each other, well it was before that meal was over that we decided when and how and why we were going to get married. Which we did. Two weeks later.

But it was supposed to be Dec 8th, she never showed up on Dec 8th. I had 1000 people there for the wedding. I had to call it all off. I was scared to death because the weather was lousy, and she had to fly in and she mightn't make it, so I dismissed all of the 1000 people and I get a phone call just around midnight - phone call came from Miami, and it was the tearful voice saying "I'm in Miami." And that was my future wife. So we talked and I told her to find a place to sleep, tomorrow is another day, it's fine. Except I got a phone call about a half hour later, a pilot was going to fly her to Drewfield from Miami. The marriage didn't last long - only 58 years, 7 months, and 14 days.

Methusela19151369 karma

He was actually hesitant to share this story because it made NASA look bad to have the kid be so unknown.

Methusela19151266 karma

Yes, Jim Lovell said it when they had an explosion in the propulsion system.