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Project Mercury

In 1959 Tecwyn was one of a group of twenty-five hired by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Tecwyn was to become NASA's very first Flight Dynamics Office at the Mercury Control Center at Cape Kennedy. He played a key role in the design of the Centre and also a subsequent Mission Center established in Houston, Texas, later re-named the Johnson Space Centre.

Project Mercury put the first Americans into space. Initiated in 1958, with six manned flights from 1961 to 1963, Project Mercury's objectives were specific: to orbit a manned spacecraft around Earth; to investigate man's ability to function in space; and to recover both man and spacecraft safely.

Tecwyn was later stationed at the Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland holding the office of Director of Networks, later to become the very first Head of Manned Flight Operations Division at the Goddard Space Flight Centre.

It must have been an exciting occasion for Tecwyn when he met and talked to the late President of the United States John F. Kennedy following John Glenn’s flight in February 1962.

On the 21st May 1962, Tecwyn was appointed Head of Manned Flight Operations Division at (GSFC) Goddard Space Flight Centre.

Tecwyn’s family resided in Maryland; their only child, Michael Roberts, (born about 1960), attended The Martin Spalding High School, Severn, Maryland, USA.

The following comments were recorded (on the 12th June 1964) within the NASA Oral History Project as part of an interview with Lt. Col. John H. Glenn (Project Mercury Astronaut and the First American Astronaut): -
“We presented him [President J F Kennedy] with this missile hat and he took that with him. It was presented down at Launch Pad 14, my launch site. He was curious about all the different things at the Cape. We visited the Control Center… He was very interested in this, and particularly he was interested in meeting all the different people who had had a personal part to play in the whole flight - Walt Williams, Chris Kraft, Al Shepard, Carl Huss, and Tec Roberts, some of these people in the Control Center who had played a very personal part in making sure that everything had gone right during the flight.”

The following comments were recorded within the NASA Oral History Project as part of an interview with William B Easter: -
“Kraft's got a group of guys over here headed by Tec [Tecwyn] Roberts, who later went to Goddard Space Flight Center… and became one of my personal friends until he died. He was one of the greatest that ever lived. He was from Wales.”
John Glenn - First American Astronaut Mercury Project - Astronauts Next.
The seven American Astronauts
Mercury Project
Lt. Col. John H. Glenn,
First American Astronaut