NASA opens exhibit on 50th anniversary of Apollo 1 fire

Apollo Fire Memorial_514705

This Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017 photo provided by NASA shows part of the Apollo 1 exhibit at the Kennedy Space Center in Titusville, Fla. On Jan. 27, 1967, a fire during a test on the launch pad killed three astronauts at the start of the Apollo moon program. (Kim Shiflett/NASA via AP)

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA is opening an exhibit honoring the astronauts in the Apollo 1 fire — 50 years to the day they died.

The hatch from the burning spacecraft is the main draw. It had been concealed, along with the capsule, for a half-century. On Friday’s anniversary, the hatch that trapped Gus Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee inside their capsule at the launch pad is finally going on display.

The public exhibit at Florida’s Kennedy Space Center also includes the redesigned hatch on the spacecraft that sent men to the moon.

Families of the Apollo 1 crew got a private tour Wednesday and attended a memorial Thursday. Friday evening, they’ll gather at the abandoned pad where the accident occurred Jan. 27, 1967.

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