A pack of astronauts that run under the banner Dog Crew II heads for the stars. Liftoff of the Space Shuttle Endeavour from Launch Pad 39A occurred at 11:09:00.052 a.m. EDT, Sept. 7, 1995. "Every dog has its day and today is your day," KSC Orbiter Test Conductor Roger Gillette pledged to STS-69 Mission Commander David M. Walker, Pilot Kenneth D. Cockrell, Payload Commander James S. Voss and Mission Specialists Michael L. Gernhardt and James H. Newman prior to launch. The STS-69 astronaut crew developed a strong sense of comaraderie as they went through their flight training, and dubbed themselves the Dog Crew II to carry on a tradition that arose during an earlier Shuttle flight -- STS-53 -- to which both Voss and Walker were assigned. Each crew member adopted a dog-theme name: Walker is Red Dog; Cockrell, Cujo; Voss, Dogface; Newman, Pluto; and Gernhardt, the only space rookie, Underdog. A special patch, featuring a bulldog in a doghouse shaped like the Space Shuttle, was designed for the astronauts and other flight team members to wear. The Dog Crew II is embarking on an 11-day multifaceted mission featuring two free-flying scientific research spacecraft as well as a host of experiments in both the payload bay and the middeck. Also scheduled is an extravehicular activity, or spacewalk. (Photo Release Date: 09/07/95 )
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