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Mercury 3 Mission Patch - Alan Shepard 'Freedom 7'

Mercury 3 Mission Patch - Alan Shepard 'Freedom 7'

The Mercury-Redstone 3, MR-3 or Freedom 7 spaceflight was the first human spaceflight by the USA and took place on 5 May 1961, with Alan Shepard as the astronaut. It was part of Project Mercury which was an attempt by the USA to bring an astronaut into orbit around the Earth before the Soviet Union during the Cold war. This first manned mission, however, was only a 15-minute suborbital flight meaning above the limit of space at an altitude of 100 km (62 mi) and down again.