IRVINGTON, N.Y. – It was the end of an era for many space enthusiasts, who gathered along the Hudson River Friday morning to watch the Enterprise, NASA's first space shuttle orbiter, fly over the New York City metro area.
The shuttle arrived in Irvington around 10:45 a.m. Officials mounted the shuttle atop a 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft for its tour.
“It just gave me chills,” Jill Mayer said. Mayer is a former New York resident visiting the area from North Carolina. “It's the end of an era. It was absolutely wonderful to see. Just beautiful.”
The Enterprise will land at JFK International Airport. NASA officials said the shuttle will be “demated” from its carrier plane in the next few weeks and then placed on a barge on the Hudson River. The barge will carry Enterprise to its new home at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.
The shuttle will be displayed to the public starting this summer at the museum.
Several dozen area residents came to watch the shuttle fly over Irvington. People lined the shores of the Hudson River at both Scenic Hudson Park and the Bridge Street Properties with cameras to get the best look.
Irvington resident Kenneth Mastropietro said the shuttle flyover reminded him of the wonders of space.
“I just think space exploration is just very interesting and something we should keep doing,” he said. “I'm kind of saddened to see the program decreased and shut down to the point it is now.”
Mayer, too, said the flyover brought back good memories.
“My husband was a Marine Corp pilot, he had several friends who were astronauts,” she said. “And we've been to Cape Kennedy to see the launches, so it's very special to me.”
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