Forever Young: A Life of Adventure in Air and Space

Forever Young: A Life of Adventure in Air and Space He Walked On The Moon He Flew Six Space Missions In Three Different Programs Than Any Other Human He Served With NASA For Than Four Decades His Peers Called Him The Astronaut S Astronaut Enthusiasts Of Space Exploration Have Long Waited For John Young To Tell The Story Of His Two Gemini Flights, His Two Apollo Missions, The First Ever Space Shuttle Flight, And The First Spacelab Mission Forever Young Delivers All That And Young S Personal Journey From Engineering Graduate To Fighter Pilot, To Test Pilot, To Astronaut, To High NASA Official, To Clear Headed Predictor Of The Fate Of Planet Earth Young, With The Assistance Of Internationally Distinguished Aerospace Historian James Hansen, Recounts The Great Episodes Of His Amazing Flying Career In Fascinating Detail And With Wry Humor He Portrays Astronauts As Ordinary Human Beings And NASA As An Institution With The Same Ups And Downs As Other Major Bureaucracies He Frankly Discusses The Risks Of Space Travel, Including What Went Wrong With The Challenger And Columbia Shuttles Forever Young Is One Of The Last Memoirs Produced By An Early American Astronaut It Is The First Memoir Written By A Chief Of The NASA Astronaut Corps Young S Experiences And Candor Make This Book Indispensable To Everyone Interested In The US Space Program

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  • Hardcover
  • 432 pages
  • Forever Young: A Life of Adventure in Air and Space
  • John W. Young
  • English
  • 27 April 2018
  • 9780813042091

10 thoughts on “Forever Young: A Life of Adventure in Air and Space

  1. says:

    So this is the one we ve all been waiting for Of all of the astronaut autobiographies, John Young s has been one of the most eagerly anticipated John Young, the astronaut s astronaut He s seen and done than any other astronaut in American history No other astronaut can or will ever be able to lay claim to his achievements flew on the first manned Gemini mission with the legendary Gus Grissom, commanded a later Gemini flight, flew to the moon on Apollo 10, the dress rehearsal for the first landing, landed on the moon as commander of Apollo 16, commanded the very first flight of the Space Shuttle, and then as if that weren t enough commanded a second shuttle mission, the first to carry the SpaceLab cargo That s one tough act to follow Naturally, everyone interested in the history of spaceflight wanted to hear directly from this man.Surprisingly, Forever Young a kind of cheesy pun based title it seems neither the author nor his editors could resist is only fifty percent recollections of space adventures past The other fifty percent is devoted to one of Young s lifelong passions aerospace safety Whether in the atmosphere in an airplane or flying through space in a rocket, the safety of the vehicle s crew seems to have always been uppermost in Young s thoughts it s a consistent theme that runs through his personal story.Following his final spaceflight, Young turned his attention full time to operational issues associated with the Space Shuttle While it s apparent to anyone who ever paid much attention to the technical details of the shuttle that it was a very dangerous machine, Young s litany of concerns that he expressed to NASA management over the years along with revealed details of problems that were never widely discussed in public make one feel that the thing was a flying death trap While it s clear that he felt that the shuttle could be operated safely, he conveys the sense that it was only sheer luck that prevented tragedies than the two which resulted in crew losses And it s certainly clear that he has little love for the NASA bureaucracy that seemed to stymy the vast majority of his safety improvement suggestions He details these technical concerns in great detail While they all seem quite reasonable, he never addresses the cost associated with implementing them Anyone who engineers safety knows that there s an optimized curve between cost and safety performance They re linearly relatedbut infinite safety requires infinite cash What s the right balance between two in the real world of limited funds That s a question the reader will have to answer for themselves.You probably won t learn a whole lot about those early Gemini and Apollo flights than has been revealed elsewhere, but you ll learn much about the inner workings of the shuttle program as well as what Young thinks about current national space policy Spoiler he s none too pleased with it You ll also learn a lot about one of Young s recent passions generating support for developing technologies to defend the earth from a potentially species ending collision with an asteroid.

  2. says:

    I ve been waiting for this one for a long time now, and it was worth the wait It s very comprehensive, covering a lot than I was born here, I went to school here , etc the heaviest focus is on the Shuttle era, including a lot of testimony and technical info from the Challenger and Columbia disasters If you re not interested in that, you may find the second half of the book slow, or even padded it s of a space history book than an autobiography For me, though, it filled in knowledge gaps and made my jaw drop several times The writing style is great, too, pretty much as I expected I ll need a second reading to absorb all the technical info, so I m putting this one in the buy it if they ever put out a reasonably priced e book list.

  3. says:

    It was fun to read about the most accomplished astronaut in the history of manned space flight It becomes very obvious early on that John Young is probably one of the smartest men alive, and probably the most earnest, devout supporter of the space program, in addition to being seriously concerned about the future of humanity All throughout the book, as he s telling you about the amazing things he s experienced and accomplished, there are sentences and paragraphs explaining how he has new ideas for new challenges, or new ideas to fix old problems It s abundantly obvious that he s operating on a different level from the rest of us At times, it s almost like his career is an afterthought to his vision for the future, and humanity s survival Personally, I was very inspired I m a Floridian that grew up in the shadow of the VAB at the peak of the shuttle program, and my roots here were born of the Apollo era I live and breath the history of the Space Coast, and it s contribution to human history Reading about John Young s life is necessary to a guy like me When I say we should never have abandoned the Apollo pace, I m just some guy But when you read John Young saying it, it lends your own opinion a little credibility I hope and pray for people like him.

  4. says:

    John Young walked on the moon He drove the grand prix with the rover Amazing stuff Yet, and this surprises me, I enjoyed the detail into the shuttle program the most It s hard to comprehend how any organization could design and implement a space program when nothing of the sort has been done before Hard to imagine the logistics of coordinating hundreds of thousands of people Yet NASA nailed it with Mercury, Gemini and Apollo The Shuttle program lost the momentum and struggled.I m a worker I know that efficiency and correctness get lost or prevented by individual managers, the in groups they foster and by layers of management in general It gets worse across the mix of contractors with varying and different incentive alignments Young writes about this in specifics about the Shuttle program Especially in his crusade for safety It s interesting and saddening.I appreciate also when Young calls out politics and public disinterest NASA was hamstrung and still is today How could we, the public, possibly lose interest in the greatest exploration humans have ever done Why would politicians not leverage the raw, inherit excitement I don t know Young doesn t either.I disagree with another reviewer on this single point Young does mention cost trade offs in some of his discussions on things that didn t happen There were clear cases of waste and foolish decisions that cost much down the line Perfect safety doesn t exist and Young never implies it does He was for reasoned, studied decisions that balanced cost.One of the clearest themes is the beautiful concept I m an engineer of testing Testing testing testing That topic is never overbearing, I just want to applaud it Well okay and to marvel at how Young is no timid fellow STS 1 was the first flight of any program to fly manned The other three programs launched unmanned shakeout flights Young and Robert Crippen just hopped in and took the new bird for a spin Wow.Young has rare experience and insight I m thankful it s written down.

  5. says:

    John Young was undoubtedly the most experienced astronaut of NASA s early era, active from the days of Gemini, through Apollo and the Space Shuttle He walked on the Moon, commanded the first test flight of the Space Shuttle and didn t retire from NASA until he was seventy four He was legendary for his soft spoken demeanour, coolness under pressure and later in his career, for not being afraid to speak truth to power on issues of mission risk.His memoir is laid out in a straightforward chronological fashion, starting with early life and following him throughout his career in the Navy and at NASA While he is most well known for his missions, his time as head of the Astronaut Office and then as a sort of senior and independent safety inspector within NASA, make up large parts of the narrative There is also ample space dedicated to the Challenger and Columbia accidents, with extensive technical detail.For any NASA and space buff, the memoir is interesting reading However, it is a bit of a slog The style is quite dry and self effacing, much as the man himself Descriptions of missions mostly chronicle events without poetic embellishments This is in stark contrast with, for example, the memoirs of Gene Cernan, Gene Krantz and Mike Mullane, which in their different ways speak much passionately about the subject matter The book feels long winded in many parts, with sections which are just listing various mission achievements, seemingly for completeness sake The most readable bits are where Mr Young manages to convey his considerable technical expertise to illustrate an issue concisely, such as when he discusses his testimony before the Rogers Commission, investigating Challenger.I strongly felt that decisive editing could have made this a readable book, but then again, I also felt that Mr Young s particular voice came through loud and clear.http www.books.rosboch.net 2018 09

  6. says:

    Soon as I read Young s obituary I knew I wanted to read his book for his account of his growing up The space stuff was good, to be sure scary EVAs, Apollo 13, the Russian laser aimed at Challenger, and most importantly his caution about safety standards when pieces of NASA s work is privatized But even better was his encapsulated story of growing up in depression era Cartersville, Ga., and other points south Orlando and Signal Mt, TN up to his entry into that North Avenue Trade School in Atlanta, Georgia Tech The Book of Knowledge, the tomato sandwiches it could have been a novel all its own But Young is no , sadly And as he writes, in fifty years no one who saw the first Moon landing will be alive And there will have been no Americans landed on the Moon, either.

  7. says:

    Gemini Apollo Space Shuttle Lots of detail Very readable A peek into the sausage factory some of it is Not Pretty Written by a major participant The last few chapters require a willingness to tough it out.

  8. says:

    This is an excellent book I have read many books on the Apollo program, written by both the Astronauts and the people who worked on the program This book will not let you down.

  9. says:

    Astronauts have to be ego maniacs or it just doesn t work Young has an ego, but he also has quite the experience to back it up This book is very much about his knowledge expertise and understanding of tasks the reader can only think of as sifi.

  10. says:

    This man had an amazing career, and was both talented and kind the kind of man you d like to meet and know Thank you for contributing to the literature sharing your inspirational story was a gift Thank you.

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