Re "The last dance," Sept. 22
I have been struck by the outpouring of positive emotion over Endeavour's final flight. I wish the space shuttle could have flown over every major American city, sparking patriotism for some peaceful national goal that supersedes politics.
People of all political stripes are sick of all the negative energy and want to believe in what has made our country the envy of the world. We need another national goal to re-dedicate our imagination to the evolution of mankind.
The media coverage of Endeavour's flight was exceptional. Sadly, it was a much different story while the orbiter was still operational.
During those years, the public could have been witness to the dramatic use of the shuttle to extend mankind's reach into space, but the media preferred to cover events other than a launch or a landing as if spaceflight had become boring.
Endeavour flying on a modified Boeing 747 energized the public, but the event was really a funeral procession. Fortunately, Endeavour won't be buried but will instead be treated by Space Age taxidermy for display.
The "last dance" was a doozy, except for the San Fernando Valley.
It's sad to realize that it wasn't deemed worthy for the orbiter to fly over Rocketdyne in Canoga Park to recognize its contribution to the shuttle program. If it weren't for those who designed and built the reliable engines, the shuttle program would never have "launched."
I'm surprised that the San Fernando Valley, including the cities of Calabasas (former headquarters for Lockheed Corp.), Burbank (home of the stealth fighter), Glendale and San Fernando, were not in the flight plan.
Watching Endeavour fly over L.A. reminded me of an event that happened 28 years ago. In 1984, Los Angeles hosted the Summer Olympics, and people in neighborhoods all over the city came outside to see the torch relay.
Both Endeavour and the torch are symbols of excellence, and we wanted to see them pass by.
The power of prayer: A few days ago I thought, "Please, for just one day I would like to turn on the TV and not see people who wanted to kill us all."
I would like to thank all the powers that be for having Endeavour fly over us before landing.
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