Eugene Kranz's Apollo 13 Vest

Display Status:

This object is not on display at the National Air and Space Museum. It is either on loan or in storage.

Collection Item Summary:

This vest was worn by Eugene F. "Gene" Kranz, NASA Chief of Flight Control Division, during Apollo 13, the third lunar landing attempt. During that flight, mission control worked with Apollo contractors and the flight crew to solve several problems, foregoing a Moon landing but bringing the crew back to Earth safely.

As the leader of the "white team" in mission control, Kranz wore a different white suit vest, handsewn by his wife, Marta, for each mission, beginning with Gemini IV in 1965 and ending with Apollo 17 in 1972. Most of the vests are more elaborate than this one. Although Kranz's trademark vests were well known at the time, Kranz's portrayal by actor Ed Harris in the blockbuster 1995 film "Apollo 13" made this particular white vest iconic.

As was the custom in mission control, after Kranz's retirement, the color "White" was retired from possible flight team colors. Kranz donated this to the Musuem in 2006.