Second Apollo 15 Stingray Joins NCM NASA Exhibit

What do you drive after being the first people in history to drive on the moon? A Corvette, of course. And now the second Corvette owned by the crew of the Apollo 15 has been reunited with the National Corvette Museum’s Apollo 15 ‘Vette.

Crewed by David Scott, Alfred Worden, and James Irwin, Apollo 15 was just the latest team to be outfitted with “special lease” Corvettes designed especially for them.

The tradition had been alive since the early days of the space program when Alan Shepard was handed the keys to a brand new ‘Vette after becoming the first American to slip the surly bonds of earth.

Although NASA and Chevy had no official partnership (Indy 500 winner and Cadillac-Corvette dealer, Jim Rothmann took it upon himself to honor astronauts with a “special” astronaut lease) the tradition caught on quickly.

When the Apollo 15 trio returned to earth in 1971, they received a trio of Corvettes in—what else?—red, white, and blue.

The National Corvette Museum has long had the white ‘Vette, but the other two remained in private hands. The blue one, which visited the museum recently is featured in the above video and you can hear all about it there.

Its life, it appears, was a charmed one. The original paint remains in relatively good condition, thanks to a family who understood its importance, it was kept out of the sun and harsh conditions.

These Corvettes, though far from the first, still have a special place in history because Apollo 15 was the first extended trip to the moon. As a result, it was the first one that tried to explore the moon and it was the first time the lunar rover was driven on the moon.

That means that these Corvettes were owned by the first non-terrestrial drivers. I’m not really sure what insight that would give these astronauts, but it still feels meaningful somehow.

A mystery remains, though, about the third Apollo 15 Corvette. And that’s why the NCM is asking for your help finding it. So call Nick Cage, because there’s a national treasure that needs a-finding.

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