May 27, 1962 - Lieut. Comdr. Scott Carpenter returned to the starting point of his space journey at Cape Canaveral today and was honored as a national hero. He admitted that as an “impatient” and “preoccupied” man he had made a few mistakes in orbit. “There were mistakes,” he said in a low, quiet voice, “and I am glad because we have learned a great deal from these mistakes.” But as the 37-year-old Navy pilot gave a “report of a working astronaut to the nation,” the emphasis was not on the mistakes but on the excitement of going into space and his accomplishment in safely completing three orbits of the earth. He described his five-hour space trip as “the supreme experience of my life” and declared that “as far as I am concerned, I am ready for two weeks in orbit.” The emotional atmosphere surrounding his return to the U.S. from Grand Turk Island was evident as he stepped off the plane. As he walked down the ramp, he silently embraced his blonde wife Rene. Then he kissed and hugged each of his four children. Perhaps the only person not caught up in the emotion was his youngest daughter, Candace. The first thing the 5-year-old girl wanted to show her father was a sore she had acquired on her right elbow during his absence.
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