One of my many surprises when visiting the National Corvette Museum was the discovery of the NASA connection. Not that there is necessarily a signed document of any kind between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Museum.
One whole display room was dedicated to photographs of astronauts who have visted the Museum, the Cape Canaveral (now: Cape Kennedy) Corvette Club, and displays of patches and memorabilia.
I was told that NASA astronauts drop in unannounced, as do amazing numbers of the American military, all of whom are greatly welcomed and appreciated for their contributions toward making America this greatest country on God's green earth!
When NASA talks about engine power to school students, they reference the Corvette. From NASAexplores: “You could also compare the Shuttle engines to a Corvette. The three main engines plus the two solid rocket motors deliver the horsepower of about 120,000 Corvettes. With all that power and all that fuel consumption, having a safe, reliable engine is of paramount importance.”
When astronauts take it easy, they drive Corvettes. Quoted from a July 1999 interview of Betty Skelton Frankman, 2001 inductee to the National Corvette Museum Hall of Fame, about astronauts and Corvettes:
“In fact, you (have) probably read about the astronauts and the Corvettes (the earlier astronauts). My job at Chevrolet at the time was coordinating all of the Corvette activities. We drove Corvettes on the beach, we raced, did a number of things. Several of the astronauts had already owned Corvettes. I think Alan Shepard had two or three or something like that. So immediately we wanted them to get into Corvettes, and I believe at one point all of them but maybe one, or maybe all of them, were driving Corvettes.”
Recently the Corvette Blog published a story about astronaut Gus Grissom’s Corvette.