In the far distance at left, tiny, remote and now empty, Pad 39-A. It may be years before 39-A is used again, if ever, but in the Apollo and the Space Shuttle years, both now ended, it was a very active pad sending men to the Moon eight times and, with Pad 39-B, the shuttle into space 135 times.
It is dawn at the Cape. This photo was taken at the press site.
The shuttle had safely landed on runway 15 on the Shuttle Landing Facility a few minutes earlier on a near perfect mission.
American’s ability to put its own astronauts into space onto the International Space Station is ended. Now, and in the foreseeable future, the United States astronauts will ride into space on the Russian Soyuz. Cost of the ride to American taxpayers?
Sixty-five million-dollars, roundtrip.