Astronaut Gerald “Jerry” Carr passed away on Wednesday at the age of 88. Selected for NASA’s astronaut program in April 1966, Carr performed Capcom duties during the Apollo 8 and Apollo 12 missions and was involved in the development and testing of the lunar roving vehicle (LRV) used by Apollo flight crews. On Nov. 16, 1973, he launched with the Skylab 4 mission, serving as mission commander and spending a record-setting 84 days in orbit. He retired from NASA in 1977 and founded aerospace consulting company CAMUS Incorporated in 1984.
“NASA and the nation have lost a pioneer of long duration spaceflight,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “We send our condolences to the family and loved ones of astronaut Gerald ‘Jerry’ Carr, whose work provided a deeper understanding of life on Earth and in space. … We remember and honor his life and his contributions to the nation.”
Carr was born in Denver, Colorado, on Aug. 22, 1932. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1949 and served as a Marine test pilot, logging more than 8,000 flight hours on aircraft such as the F-9, F-6A Skyray and F-8 Crusader. Carr earned Bachelor of Science degrees in mechanical engineering from the University of Southern California and aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School along with a Master of Science degree in aeronautical engineering from Princeton University. He has received awards including the 1973 Robert J. Collier Trophy (as part of the Skylab team), NASA Distinguished Service Medal and the Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy. Carr was inducted into the Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1997.