Tales from the first Space Age

In this section
(most recently added at the top)

This section will contain interviews
with space trackers and others involved in various ways. When time permits, I will re-arrange this section to give a separate page to each interview.

Thanks go to all who have kindly agreed to share their stories!

Several other interviews have been recorded but are still to be edited – they are on the way! Hopefully many more to come!

Dave Jauncey

John Saxon 1994 interview

Ops Supervisor, Honeysuckle Creek and Tidbinbilla.

Dave Jauncey

Dr David Jauncey

Radio Astronomer.

Tony Saville

Tony Saville

Tidbinbilla Comms Supervisor.

Bill Woods

Bill Woods

Overseas Telecommunications Commission Australia.

Don Gray

Don Gray 1994 interview

Island Lagoon, Tidbinbilla, Honeysuckle Creek.

Tom Reid

Tom Reid 1994 interview

Red Lake, Orroral Valley, Honeysuckle Creek, Tidbinbilla.

Stuart Ross Taylor

Dr Stuart Ross Taylor 1994 interview

Apollo lunar sample analysis.

Mike Dinn

Mike Dinn 1994 interview

Tidbinbilla and Honeysuckle Creek.

Kevyn Westbrook at Muchea

Kevyn Westbrook 1994 interview


Neil Sandford

Paul and Joan Dench memories, 1994


Peter Pockley

Dr Peter Pockley

Founder of the ABC Science Unit.
(Editing in progress.)

Neil Sandford

Neil Sandford

New Zealand Post Office, New Zealand Antarctic Expedition,
Cooby Creek, Honeysuckle Creek, Tidbinbilla, and more.
(Editing in progress.)

Ned Kelly

Ernest (Ned) Kelly

Woomera Minitrack.

Don Gray

Don Gray

Deputy Stadir (MSFN) Tidbinbilla, 1966 – 1967
Stadir Tidbinbilla 1967 – 1969
Stadir Honeysuckle Creek 1980 – 1978

Jack Garman

Jack Garman

Apollo Guidance Computer.

Kevyn Westbrook at Muchea

Kevyn Westbrook 2012 interview

Muchea, Carnarvon, NASCOM Communications hub Deakin.

Dick Nafzger

Richard Nafzger

Apollo TV ground support, Goddard.

Bruce Window

Photo: Keith Aldworth (Island Lagoon, Tid), Nevil Eyre (Cooby Creek, HSK), Bruce Window (Island Lagoon, Tid, Parkes) at the Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium, October 2007.
Photo: Sue Eyre.

Apollo 11 at Honeysuckle Creek

Mike Dinn, Honeysuckle Creek Deputy Director

audio part 1 (14 minutes, 3.1MB mp3 file) on coming to Australia, Tidbinbilla, coming to Honeysuckle Creek, simulations, and Apollo missions leading up to Apollo 11.

audio part 2 (28 minutes, 6.3MB mp3 file) on Apollo 11.

Mike Dinn

Kevin Gallegos, at Honeysuckle SDDS

audio Kevin Gallegos talks about how he began at Honeysuckle Creek, and what happened at HSK as the Apollo 11 Lunar TV came in from the receivers.

“We punched above our weight.”

(21 minutes, 7.4MB mp3 file)
Photo courtesy Freehand Productions. Interviewed July 2009.

Kevin Gallegos

Ed von Renouard, Honeysuckle Creek Video Tech

audio part 1 (6 minutes, 1.9MB mp3 file) on coming to Australia, work in Antarctica and at Island Lagoon and starting at Honeysuckle Creek – up to Apollo 8.

audio part 2 (3 minutes, 1.1MB mp3 file) on how the scan converter worked, what the TV looked like.

audio part 3 (8 minutes, 2.7MB mp3 file) on what is was like at watching the Moonwalk.

Ed von Renouard

Bryan Sullivan, Honeysuckle Creek Computers

audio part 1 (12 minutes, 5.5MB mp3 file) on the Computers at Honeysuckle Creek.

audio part 2 (10 minutes, 4.7MB mp3 file) on Apollo 11.

“I remember the trip home in the car… none of us hardly said a word – we were speechless – we were all, I think, wrapped up in our own thoughts…”

(See also Bryan’s bio.)

Bryan Sullivan

Bill Wood at Goldstone during Apollo 13

Bill Wood

audio. 2.2MB mp3 file runs for 9 minutes.

Bill Wood at Goldstone talks about the problems caused by having the Lunar Module and the Instrument Unit on the SIVB on the same frequency. At the time of the explosion, Bill was USB team leader at the Goldstone Wing site, DSS11. (Recorded 08 April 2010.) Background here.

Apollo 11 TV Microwave links from Honeysuckle to Sydney

Bruce Ekert

Bruce Ekert, PMG Tech

audio 13 minute interview
(4.3MB mp3 file) with PMG Electronics Communications Technician Bruce Ekert.

Bruce helped set up the microwave link from Honeysuckle Creek to Williamsdale to Red Hill. He manned the link at Red Hill during the Moonwalk.

Background and illustrations here.

Apollo 11 TV at Sydney Video

Sydney Video

Wayne Ozarko, OTC Tech at OTC Paddington

OTC Technician Wayne Ozarko helped install the equipment at Sydney Video. He is seen here in some film found by Mark Gray of Spacecraft Films.

audio Listen to this 7 minute interview with Wayne (3.2MB mp3 file).

Watch this 11MB mp4 file (containing the image above) of silent film of Sydney Video shortly before Apollo 11. Courtesy of Spacecraft Films’ Mark Gray, who found it in US archives.

Ian Mackenzie, ATN-7

Ian Mackenzie worked for ATN Channel 7 in Sydney in setting up outside broadcasts and links. During the Apollo 11 Moonwalk he was at OTC Paddington and was just outside Sydney Video. These days he runs Chromatronics.

Watch this 32MB mp4 (12'14") interview recorded in Sydney in July 2009. Or watch it in HD on Vimeo.

Apollo 11 TV in Western Australia

audio 15 minute interview (5.1MB mp3)

with ABC Television Perth Senior Engineer Allan Hullett.

Allan made sure West Australian viewers saw the Moonwalk.

And a 4 minute segment (1.4MB mp3 file) on the 1966 satellite link, Down Under Comes Up Live.

Photo: University of Western Australia.

Allan Hullett


Dr Manuel Bautista, Madrid Complex Director

Dwight Steven-Boniecki and Aleksandra Claxton interviewed retired Madrid Station Complex Director Dr Manuel Bautista at the Apollo 11 40th anniversary celebrations in Fresnedillas de la Oliva on July 21, 2009. Runs for 4:52.

Click the photo to download a 33MB MP4 file – or watch it in high definition at Vimeo.

Also in the Fresnedillas section.

Larry Haug

Larry Haug at Madrid

Larry Haug was interviewed at the celebrations at Fresnedillas de la Oliva on July 21, 2009 for the US Embassy in Madrid. Runs for 3:17.

Click the photo to download a 16MB MP4 video file – with thanks to Larry and the US Embassy in Madrid.

Also in the Fresnedillas section.

Deep Space Network

Richard Mallis, Deep Space Network

Richard Mallis, former Operations Manager of NASA’s Deep Space Network, speaks about the origins of the DSN.

63MB MPEG4 video file – or watch it in higher definition on Vimeo.

Interviewed by Colin Mackellar in Canberra on 22 July 2009.

Apollo Range Instrumented Aircraft

Stan Anderson.

Stan Anderson, who was at ARIA Control in Florida during Apollo, speaks about the Apollo Range Instrumented Aircraft.

Watch it above in Standard Definition – or watch it in High Definition on Vimeo.

You can also download a 108MB MPEG4 file (640x360 pixels) here.

Or a 51MB MPEG4 file (lower quality, 320x 180 pixels) here.

Interviewed by Colin Mackellar in Sydney on 26 July 2009.

Muchea Tracking Station, Mercury Tracking Station No.8, Western Australia

Jack Duperouzel speaks about

The early days of Muchea
7 minutes / 3.9MB mp3.

and The Dakota tragedy
2 minutes / 1.5MB mp3.

November 2011.

More in the Muchea section.

Jack Duperouzel