Today is the birthday of astronaut Theodore Cordy “Ted” Freeman (February 18, 1930 – October 31, 1964.) Ted Freeman and his wife Faith were friends of my mother and father. Both my father and Ted Freeman were stationed at Bryan Air Force base in the early 1950s, and they rented houses three blocks apart, in College Station, Texas. The families often played the card game Bridge together. Faith and my mother were also in a play production together. Oddly, the Freemans named their daughter Faith, and they referred to her as “Faith, Junior.” (They couldn’t call her “Little Faith”, for fear of “Oh Ye of Little Faith” jokes.) A decade later, while training as an astronaut in the Gemini space program, Ted was killed in a birdstrike flying accident, while flying a T-38 Talon jet trainer. Ted Freeman was the first casualty of NASA’s manned space program. Fittingly, Ted Freeman’s name is inscribed on a memorial plaque that was left on the moon, by Apollo astronauts. – JWR
Today we present a review article by our Editor At Large, Michael Z. Williamson. Mike is a true Renaissance Man. He is a retired military NCO, award-winning sci-fi novelist and anthologist, blogger, essayist, historical reenactor, bladesmith, gunsmith, and handloader. This article shows his expertise with the latter.