Original member of the Wernher von Braun rocket team dies - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Original member of the Wernher von Braun rocket team dies

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Puttkamer stands beside a model of the Saturn V rocket. (Source: NASA) Puttkamer stands beside a model of the Saturn V rocket. (Source: NASA)
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) -

One of the original members of the Wernher von Braun rocket team has died.

Jesco von Puttkamer died, following a brief illness, at the age of 79.

Puttkamer worked with NASA since 1962. He was part of the Apollo Program as an engineer. Most recently. He worked with the International Space Station Program as a technical program.

"Jesco was an institution at NASA," said William Gerstenmaier, associate administrator for Human Exploration and Operations at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "His time here spanned almost the entire breadth of the agency's human spaceflight programs. He was a direct link from von Braun's efforts to get people off the ground to the International Space Station and 12 years of continuous human presence. We lost an outspoken advocate for NASA's efforts to explore farther than we ever have gone before."

Puttkamer received a number of awards including NASA's prestigious Exceptional Service Medal and a NASA Honor Award for successful initiatives of advancing American-Russian cooperation in spaceflight.

He is also the author of a number of books on spaceflight.

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