Mason Perry struggled to get the Phoenix microphone away from Jordan when the last "Amen" was said on Jordan's final flight. It was painful to watch. "It's called tough love," Mason said after the microphone was secure in his hands. "Jordan needed to let go and say goodbye. I did what I had to do to get him out the door. Let it be known throughout the land that the Phoenix is now entering the Age of Mason!"
We thought the day would never come, but it did. And when it took its final bow at 11:59 P.M. Saturday it took with it our friend Jordan Smith, a ten year veteran of the Space Center and Former Phoenix Set Director. Holding his hand throughout his final mission was his padawan Mason Perry and his mentor Jon Parker. There were others who would never forgive themselves if they hadn't volunteered to serve with Jordan one last time.
Jordan's Last staff for his last mission. And then on Mason's orders (the new Phoenix Set Director) They turned their phasers on Jordan to remove him as a potential future rival to the Phoenix throne
I was on hand to photograph the start of his swan song mission at 3:30 P.M. but because the mission was a 5 hour I couldn't stay. 8:30 P.M. for me is like midnight to someone
much younger. Therefore, I'm grateful for Audrey, The Troubadour's CMSC's onsite photographer, for taking the post mission photographs and Jon Parker for videoing the final few minutes of his mission.
Jordan held his composure during his pre-boarding speech and assigning of stations. Little did his crew know of the importance of the mission to their flight director and how uncomfortably crowded the Phoenix Control Room was with Jordan well wishes on the other side of the wall they were facing.
Yes, I suppose it wasn't Covidlike to all be in such close quarters but one takes risks for one's friends - right? Jon had just returned with his lunch from Daylight Donuts and was wondering what all the fuss was about. Once reminded it was Jordan's final day, he cordially shared his lunch with the volunteers and staff in honor of the occasion. Each received a quarter of a donut with the promise to not ask for seconds and to wash up afterwards.
I'm not sure Jordan received his Daylight ration due to his responsibilities in the hallway sorting the crew into their respective rolls.
Jordan began his "Welcome to the Bridge" monolog after everyone found their seat. I retired to the control room before he started the knock knock who's there routine. I wanted to claim my quarter of a donut before they were gone.
Jordan with his last crew at the end of the 5 hour mission
A short video of the last few minutes of Jordan's last flight will be posted here in a day or two. Jon is getting the video ready.
A Few of Jordan's Mileposts Along His Ten Year Road at the Space Center
I went through The Troubadour's past posts and found a few highlighting Jordan. I'd like to share them with you today.....
We have something to celebrate today (a good excuse for a post, wouldn't you say?).
This is James Smith. James is pictured above receiving his navy blue Flight Director's shirt from Her Graciousness, Odyssey Set Director, Christine. This honor makes James the Odyssey's newest ordained Flight Director.
Her Graciousness, Christine, The First of Her Name, proclaimed last Saturday James Smith day here in Wonderland. Everyone at the Space Center had to bow as he passed and, upon pain of banishment, refer to him as Sir James.
Sir James is shown in the photograph above receiving enthusiastic praise and applause from collared nobles and black shirted peasants. I'm standing in the background surveying the staff and volunteers, looking for anyone showing disrespect. Occasionally we have a volunteer unaware of the reverence required toward a newly collared Knight of the Realm. These poor unfortunates are taken from the room, flogged and returned very repentant - never to make such a mistake again.
I found one, his name was Jordan, the younger brother of revered James. He was in the back snickering at the accolades showered upon his older brother. I snapped my fingers and pointed him out. Two Collared Knights responded, pushing chairs and tables out of their way to apprehend him. The solemn assembly was briefly interrupted by his weeping and wailing for forgiveness. I was moved by his sincerity and called for silence and his temporary release.
I turned to Sir James. "Sir James, this kinsman of yours has shown you disrespect. I leave his fate to you. Shall he go free and return to his chair yonder or shall he be taken at once to the tower for flogging?
James thought for a moment before speaking. "Off with his head!" he said slowly and deliberately. The room went quiet. Jordan nearly fainted. Even I was astonished at the severity of the sentence. A moment or two passed before James spoke again. "Just kidding. Flog him and leave him in the cell. I'll pick him up on my way home."
The room erupted in cheers at Jordan's reprieve. Jordan regained consciousness. "Your brother has saved your neck from a fatal meeting with the executioner's blade. 'Tis a flogging only!" someone shouted from the crowd.
"A flogging only?" Jordan whimpered at his brother. Sir James nodded.
"Thank you Sir. Oh, Thank you for the flogging I'm about to receive." Jordan's face brightened and continued to beam as he was escorted from the room. James held out his arms signalling his desire for another round of applause.
It was another wonderful day here at the Space Center.
June 2012. Jordan Earned his Phoenix Pass and Pin From Dave Daymont
|Jordan in June 2012|
From The Troubadour, June 2012
This is Mr. Daymont congratulating young Jordan Smith on the occasion of his receiving a Phoenix Pin. Jordan is one of those volunteers who never stops talking. He talks and talks and talks and talks - almost non-stop.
"I can never get a word in edgewise," Mr. Daymont confided in me just last week. "What do I do? You've got to help me. He knows something about everything. I bring up a subject I'm sure he knows nothing about and OFF HE GOES throwing out facts, figures, prose, poetry and dialog."
I promised Mr. Daymont I'd figure out a way to contain Jordan's abundant, vocal, and demonstrative enthusiasm. I could be rich if his energy could be bottled and sold as an elixir for diminished attentiveness
Phoenix Set Director Miranda is getting far too lax in her team expectations. Here she is seen flight directing the Phoenix - FROM A STOOL! Jordan, supposedly her subordinate, is sitting in the flight director's chair. Notice he is also out of uniform.
Could it be that Jordan is calling the shots in the Phoenix now? Could Mr. Porter, CMSEC Director, have a potential staffing problem on his hands? Does Miranda have the backbone to stand up to this usurper - this young claimant to power? Can Jordan be shut down before he makes his next move?
It may be too late for poor Miranda. It appears Jordan's next move was already in play. He brought in the heavy guns for this coup d'état.
Jordan Smith Become Phoenix Flight Director September 2015
Jordan sitting on the bridge of the Phoenix on the day
of his appointment as Phoenix Set Director
September 5, 2015
Jordan Receives his 5 Year Pin. February 2017
Jordan Smith received his 5 Years of Service Pin from Space Center Director James Porter at an Honor's Night in February 2017.
Jordan started volunteering at the Space Center during my reign way back in the summer of 2012. Yesterday he reminded me that he was the first in his family to volunteer, not his big brother James.
June 2017. Jordan Attends the Fireman's Breakfast with the Staff
Jordan Smith, the last at the trough, continued to consume after everyone else had their fill and moved on. Jordan is a gentleman, scholar, and a good man to have on your side in any eating competition. I think the firemen had to bring him back to the Space Center in the ambulance. He was too full to walk.
Jordan Smith is Named Phoenix Set Director Again Having Returned from an LDS Mission. Jon Parker Says He is Too Busy When In Reality He is Just Getting Too Old for the Task
Why is it the Phoenix always has outstanding set directors? That tradition continued with the appointment of Jordan Smith as the new Phoenix Set Director replacing Jon Parker who has been given other duties as Assistant Director of the Christa McAuliffe Space Center. At least that is story Jon tells.
Rumor has it that Jon is responsible for the disappearance of the Romulan Ale set aside for Mr. Porter's Time Lord toast. According to the CMSC staff, Jon has been in a better mood lately and more forgiving of minor mistakes in the operation of the simulators. There is also the time I found him outside the Space Center on a cold Saturday evening throwing snowballs at passing cars while shouting, "Fire Photon Torpedoes!".
Regardless of how he got the appointment, we want to congratulate Jordan for his new position.
And A Few Final Thoughts On Jordan's Retirement
Finally, having known and worked with Jordan for over 10 years, I want this history to record that of all the hundreds and hundreds of volunteers and staff I've had the pleasure of working with over the last 31 plus years, Jordan ranks at or near the top when it comes to those qualities which make a person truly likeable and genuine; kindness, generosity, warm heartedness, and dedication. If these deep space missions were real, Jordan would be on my must have list of bridge officers.
Congratulations Jordan on graduating from university and landing your first high paying job in a field where you'll excel.
Your Space Center family will miss you very much but please remember, your departure papers have the "Reactivation" Clause" triggerable upon an emergency the remaining troops cannot resolve, like how to start the Phoenix properly :)
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