On-board portrait of Walter Schirra in weightlessness, October 11-22, 1968

Space Mission
Apollo 7, October 11-22, 1968, orbit 140, 222:00:00 GET

Walter Cunningham

Photo Description
Vintage chromogenic print on fiber-based Kodak Paper, 20.3 x 25.4cm (8 x 10in), with NASA MSC caption and “A Kodak Paper” watermarks on the verso, numbered “NASA AS7-4-1582” in red in top margin, with three filing holes in top margin
20.3 x 25.4cm (8 x 10in)

Walter Schirra was one of the original Mercury Seven astronauts and flew on Mercury 8, Gemini 6 and Apollo 7.

“To me, it’s one of the great photos taken in space,” said Richard Underwood, NASA chief of photography. “I thought it was the best study of the stress and strain on a human being. It has natural lighting and unique shadows. You see the last day of the last hurrah of an aging pioneer” (Schick and Van Haaften, p. 90).

“Wally and I had a personal interest in taking portraits. I took a picture of him where you can see he’s just worn out and I cut off just a small part of his head. After we got back he was irritated. He said ‘Look what you did! You chopped off the top of my head.’ That picture seemed to catch the hard work and real effort, not simply the glamour of spaceflight,” said Walter Cunningham (Schick and Van Haaften, p. 90).