Gene Cernan’s Apollo 17 cuff checklist realizes $744K at RR

Gene Cernan's Apollo 17-flown cuff checklist, $744,993

Gene Cernan’s Apollo 17-flown cuff checklist, $744,993

BOSTON – Gene Cernan’s Apollo 17 flown checklist used during his final moonwalk sold for $744,993 at RR Auction.

On December 14, 1972, Apollo 17 Commander Gene Cernan — the last man on the Moon — delivered his parting words from the lunar surface. The Apollo program was over, and mankind did not know when it would return to another celestial body. Standing before the American flag, he delivered these words:

“Here man completed his first exploration of the Moon, December 1972 A.D. May the spirit of peace in which we came be reflected in the lives of all mankind’… This is our commemoration that will be here until someone like us, until some of you who are out there, who are the promise of the future, come back to read it again and to further the exploration and the meaning of Apollo.”

Cernan penned the text of the Lunar Plaque to be left on the surface, and read it aloud during the broadcast of his final moments on the Moon.

On his wrist was his EVA-3 cuff checklist, and on the bottom of the last page he had written some crib notes to jog his memory for this speech: “Chall[enge] of Apollo. Door Promise.”

“I think probably one of the most significant things we can think about when we think about Apollo is that it has opened for us — ‘for us’ being the world — a challenge of the future. The door is now cracked, but the promise of the future lies in the young people, not just in America, but the young people all over the world learning to live and learning to work together.”

Cernan wore this cuff checklist on his wrist for the duration of the final EVA of Apollo 17, exposing it to the lunar environment for seven hours and 15 minutes.

The cuff checklist is a comprehensive guide for the extravehicular activity (hence the abbreviation EVA), offering preparation procedures, simplified maps of traverse routes and landmarks.

The checklist occupies a special place in Apollo history. It not only provided instructions for man’s last moonwalk, but held the handwritten notes for the last words spoken from the surface of the Moon.

This historic speech echoed the words of Neil Armstrong from three years earlier: mankind had made its giant leap, and Commander Cernan looked forward to a peaceful, hopeful future.

“Gene Cernan’s last words on the moon were meant for the next generation of astronauts,” said Bobby Livingston, Executive VP at RR Auction. “As we get closer to Man returning to the lunar surface, this checklist has taken on a deeper meaning with our space memorabilia clients.”

Buzz Aldrin's Apollo 11-flown Lunar Module checklist page, $143,750

Buzz Aldrin’s Apollo 11-flown Lunar Module checklist page, $143,750

Additional highlights from the sale include Buzz Aldrin’s Apollo 11-flown Lunar Module checklist page, which sold for $143,750.

Buzz Aldrin's Apollo 11 flown flight form page, $129,693

Buzz Aldrin’s Apollo 11 flown flight form page, $129,693

Also performing well was Buzz Aldrin’s Apollo 11 flown flight form page, which realized $129,693.

Gemini Data Programmer, $74,083

Gemini Data Programmer, $74,083

A Gemini Data Programmer, which was part of its Digital Guidance system, achieved $74,083.

Gene Cernan's Lunar-flown Apollo 17 EVA 1 Prep 'Rock Manifest' page, $68,069

Gene Cernan’s Lunar-flown Apollo 17 EVA 1 Prep ‘Rock Manifest’ page, $68,069

Gene Cernan’s Lunar-flown Apollo 17 EVA 1 Prep ‘Rock Manifest’ page sold for $68,069.

Apollo 11 First on the Moon book, signed by its crew members, $41,721

Apollo 11 First on the Moon book, signed by its crew members, $41,721

An Apollo 11 First on the Moon book, signed in full by its crew members, sold for $41,721.

The Space Exploration and Aviation sale from RR Auction began September 26 and concluded on October 21. For more information, go to www.rrauction.com.

 

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