Commander Paul Weitz passed away on
October 23rd, 2017.
He will be missed.
Here are my two STS-6 flown cue cards signed/inscribed by Mission Commander Weitz. STS-6, the first Challenger mission, lifted off at 1:30 P.M. EST on April 4th 1983. It marked the first use of a new lightweight external tank and lightweight SRB casings. STS-6 carried a crew of four – Commander Weitz; Pilot Karol J. Bobko; and Mission Specialists Donald H. Peterson and Story Musgrave. Using new spacesuits designed specifically for the Space Shuttle program, Peterson and Musgrave successfully accomplished the program's first extravehicular activity (EVA), performing various tests in the orbiter's payload bay. Their spacewalk lasted 4 hours and 17 minutes. Challenger returned to Earth at 10:53 A.M. PST on April 9th 1983, landing on Runway 22 at Edwards AFB. During the mission, it completed 80 orbits, traveling 2 million miles (as did these cue cards!) in 5 days, 23 minutes and 42 seconds. It was flown back to KSC on 16 April 1983.
On January 28, 1986, Challenger exploded 73 seconds into Mission STS-51-L, killing all seven of it's crew members.
Commander Weitz is seated middle.
Commander Weitz, myself, and both cue cards.
Spacefest IV, June 2012.