Homegrown Hoosier to American Hero- Celebrating the Life of Virgil “Gus” Grissom


Schedule of Events May 5, 2017
2nd Floor of the Frankfort Library

Exhibit Opening and Reception 5 p.m.
Book signing by George Leopold, Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom
Wabash Valley Astronomical Society (WVAS) & Telescopes
“Outreach to Space” Interactive Exhibits*
Friends Annual Meeting 6:30 p.m.
Author George Leopold Presentation 6:45 p.m.

Hoosier astronaut Virgil “Gus” Grissom lived a full life in his 40 years on earth. He was one of the seven original astronauts of NASA’s early space exploration program. In addition, he was the second American in space, thefirst person to go into space twice, a decorated Air Force Veteran, and a test pilot. Gus Grissom was all of that and more. Sadly, he was one of the three astronauts who gave their life in a launch pad fire during testing for Apollo 1.

In honor of Gus Grissom, we will be having a special photography and archive exhibit in conjunction with the Friends of the Frankfort Library’s Annual Meeting. This event is free and open to the public. Activities begin at 5 p.m. on May 5.

Joining us from Reston, Virginia for the evening will be George Leopold, a veteran technology journalist and science writer with over thirty years of experience. Leopold has written extensively about U.S. manned spaceflight, including the Apollo and space shuttle programs. Mr. Leopold will be discussing his book, Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom.

Leopold was recently invited to attend the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 1 tragedy. His program will also include his observances at Cape Canaveral’s newest tribute exhibit dedicated in the memory of the Apollo 1 crew: Gus Grissom, Edward White, and Roger Chaffee.

Interactive exhibits on loan from the Evansville Museum of Arts, History and Science will be on display May 5 through May 26. These exhibits teach children and adults about space and space travel through hands-on exploration.

We are also looking forward to the Wabash Valley Astronomical Society attending the opening on May 5. The WVAS members will share their telescopes, and assist with observing and navigating the night sky. Their main focus will be on the moon since that was Gus’ ultimate goal.

We are excited to share with you items on loan from the Virgil I. Grissom Memorial Museum and photos from NASA, Indiana Historical Society, and U.S. Naval Institute. Photos will be ondisplay in the Anna and Harlan Hubbard Gallery through July 5, 2017.

This event is generously produced in cooperation with The Clinton County Visitor and Tourism Commission. Local lodging listing available at the library.

Additional sponsors: Bailey Trucking, Encompass Credit Union, Industrial Federal Credit Union, Frankfort Rotary, Gangwer Powers Insurance Agency, Patrick’s Office Supply & Furniture, Skiles Electric, and Wesley Manor.

*“Outreach to Space” exhibit is made possible by a grant from the Indiana Arts Commission through the Evansville Museum of Arts, History and Science.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

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