On January 27, 1967, less than a month before their scheduled first Apollo flight, a fire swept through the Apollo 1 command module, killing all three crew members.
This DVD contains unique material surrounding the Apollo 1 mission and accidental fire, including footage of crew training, preparation, detailed material on the accident including rare audio recordings, plus over 350 photos on the mission and over 100 photos taken in the course of the Apollo Review Board investigation. With over 4.5 hours of material, this DVD is the most comprehensive audio-visual material assembled on the tragedy of Apollo 1.
Note on the Spacecraft Communications Audio:
The production of this DVD was an emotional journey which began several years ago when I first starting researching the material we might place upon it. During this search, I discovered the complete spacecraft communications audio was not restricted. The recording was, in fact, open to the public in a research room. My initial thought was that we would not include it in this set.
Later I learned that the audio had been previously broadcast uncut on the ABC television network during their coverage of the first space shuttle mission.
As I listened to the material myself, the Apollo 1 fire was transformed from a historical event into a human tragedy with definable features. I felt a deeper understanding of the loss we suffered with Apollo 1 than I ever had before.
We have included the uncut audio in this DVD set.
We included the audio because it is part of the story of Apollo 1, and space flight is a dangerous business. The conquest of space has already cost several human lives, and will doubtless cost more. This cost in precious treasure should be faced directly, and as the mission of Spacecraft Films has been to present the history of space exploration in as real a manner as possible, I felt this record should be included. Since one cannot “look away from a sound” we have also provided an edited version of this material should you wish to refrain from hearing the very short but disturbing last transmission.
Mark Gray, Spacecraft Films
Detailed DVD Contents
The Crew of Apollo 1
Short tributes to the crew members of Apollo 1.
The First Apollo
Preparation for the first Apollo mission, leading up to, and including the accident.
Post-fire examination, disassembly of the spacecraft, and the investigation
Footage from the astronaut’s memorial services
Additional material surrounding the crew, mission and accident of Apollo 1
Footage courtesy NASA, The National Archives, and the U.S. Air Force.
Thanks to Benny Cheney at NASA JSC, Houston, J.L. Pickering of Retro Space Images for his always stunning collection of photographs, and to all those who provided support in making decisions regarding the presentation and production of this DVD collection. Film to tape transfers by Bono Film and Video, Arlington, VA.