by Maurice C.
I worked on the Pershing II program in the fluids and controls lab. There seemed to be a problem with the reservoir on the first stage. I was told that, on some of the units, the O-ring was extruding on the inlet, which created a serious leak. I was asked by a program engineer to accompany him to the Cape to check out a missile, which was on a launcher that ten crew members were preparing for flight. The only way to be sure that the O-ring had not extruded, was to climb up on the launcher and crawl into the flame bucket and, using a flashlight, check the O-ring to make sure it had not extruded. I have traveled to many places in the United State and Canada to trouble shoot problems with missile systems, but the trip to the Cape is the most memorable.