Monday, August 23, 2010

Astronaut Benefits

From Walter Cunningham’s forward to In the Shadow of the Moon, page xii:

[....] When I went to work as an astronaut, in 1963, I earned a little over $13,000 a year. I once calculated that, during my Apollo 7 mission, I had earned the great sum of $660. But we weren’t doing it for the money—nobody does a job like that for the money. Any one of us would have paid NASA to have the job!


Something else we did not have and were unable to obtain in those days was life insurance. The second year I was there, we thought we might get coverage when NASA went out for quotes to renew the agency’s health and accident policy. They actually solicited two quotes. Insurers had to submit one bid with the thirty astronauts included for death benefits and another bid if we were not covered. The difference was, apparently, quite significant because NASA, bless its sweet little heart, accepted the bid with astronauts not included!

“Astronaut” as a pre-existing condition?

1 comment:

  1. Alison in Indiana7:31 AM CDT

    Just being alive with the inevitable prospect of going the way of all flesh is enough to deny insurance to residents of the US. Oh! for universal health care.