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We were down near the river, on the back side of the Lincoln Memorial. Discovery was being flown from Cape Canaveral to the Udvar-Hazy wing of the National Air and Space Museum, on the grounds of the Dulles airport in suburban VA. As a victory-lap kind of thing, it was scheduled to fly over DC on a Tuesday morning -- not out of necessity, but just to be seen.

Discovery was scheduled to fly over "between 10 and 11." As of about 9:30 it had already done a few passes over Dulles (about 20 miles away), and 15 minutes later it was doing its first pass over downtown DC. It was flying super-low, about 1500', next to a single T-38 escorting it. And it was surprisingly quiet.

At NASA HQ, too many employees wanted to watch it from the 9th floor roof, so they ended up closing it off and instituting a lottery... many employees ended up going down to the mall instead, where it was easy to see it over the Capitol and Washington Monument.

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Henry Throop

Last modified Wed Apr 18 12:40:16 2012