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Paw Paw and Kath on a Moon Launch ADVENTURE

Please enjoy this letter from a granddad to his space-enthusiast grandson.

Paw Paw and Kath on a Moon Launch ADVENTURE!

What an awesome time Kathy and I had with Jonathan Micocci and Christine Crosby (your St Petersburg beach buddies) when we went to Kennedy Space Center and saw the very first commercial flight to deliver a lunar lander on the moon with multiple payloads including the FIRST MOON SELFIE!

The FIRST American launch to the moon in 52 years!

This is part of the Artemus program to deliver humans to the moon ultimately

President of Intuitive Machines, Steve Altemus,

By happenstance, we met the President of Intuitive Machines, Steve Altemus,  on the beach before the launch….(See pic). Intuitive Machines built the Odysseus spacecraft (Steve told us they nicknamed it Ody) that weighs about 4,200 pounds with a full load of propellant.


Here is a link to the Intuitive Machines Press package with LOTS of cool stuff and the whole story!!

Lots of reading in this Press Package, but worth it.

Intuitive Machines built the Odysseus spacecraft





We went to the VIP section (thanks Christine and Jonathan) on Feb 14th, but the launch was delayed until the next night.

So, at 1:05 AM the next night, we were there to see it lift off (from the SpaceX launch site. WOW! See the screenshot below. The blue dot is us…Feeling the rumble of their rockets was incredible!

We are the blue dot.






















We saw a presentation by Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona (where your dad went to college) about the amazing camera that will be deployed just before the landing to photograph the landing FROM the moon!  SELFIE!!!  First time!   (Page 35….Pictures attached) See pic of me below giving the student engineer some engineerin’ advice.


Paw Paw giving the student engineer from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University some engineerin’ advice.















Intuitive Machines co-founder, Embry-Riddle alumnus Steve Altemus (‘87), challenged his alma mater to engineer an out-of-this-world selfie when he visited the university in 2019. Students and faculty accepted Altemus’ challenge and created EagleCam, a camera system to capture the world’s first-ever third-person picture of a spacecraft making an extraterrestrial landing. Additionally, the device will test an electrostatic dust-removal system, which could lead to future advances in spacesuit technology. EagleCam was created in the university’s Space Technologies Laboratory, located in Embry-Riddle’s Research Park.

Eaglecam is designed to deploy off of Nova-C approximately 100ft (30m) above the lunar surface and capture images as the spacecraft touches down on the Moon.

Also, a famous American artist created 125 replicas of the moon in stainless steel with the names of famous people engraved on them…..The first approved art on the moon…..We met the artist too! Jeff Koons.

Artist, Jeff Koons with Chantelle Bairer, CEO of 4Space



This is the YouTube link to the launch…..the liftoff starts at about 52 minutes….


What an AWESOME trip!


Two very happy grandparents, Charlie and Kathy Palmer of Lake Mary, FL in the VIP viewing stands watching the launch of the Falcon-9 to the moon.










Editor’s Note:  Like many good things in this world, there was a woman behind this launch.  Chantelle Bairer, Founder and CEO of 4Space was the genius behind putting Jeff Koons together with Intuitive Machines and SpaceX for the placement of the very first art on the moon.

On Left: Chantelle Baire, CEO of 4Space. The first woman-owned company to go to the moon. On the right, Christine Crosby, editorial director for GRAND Magazine


Christine Crosby

About the author

Christine is the co-founder and editorial director for GRAND Magazine. She is the grandmother of five and great-grandmom (aka Grandmere) to one. She makes her home in St. Petersburg, Florida.

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