Gemini IV: Inside NASA's First Spacewalk Mission (Photos)

Meet the Gemini 4 Crew


On June 3, 1965, NASA's Gemini IV, or Gemini 4, launched astronauts Ed White and James McDevitt into space on a mission to perform the first American spacewalk. But four-day mission took years to prepare for. See photos from NASA's training, launch in our space history gallery here.

PreLaunch Studies


On May 7, 1965, the Gemini 4 prime crew — astronauts James A. McDivitt (left) and Edward H. White II — study training plans at Cape Kennedy.

Fashion Forward for Safety


An illustration depicts the many layers of the Gemini extravehicular spacesuit.

Zero-Gravity Practice


At the Manned Spacecraft Center inside the Building 4 laboratory, astronaut Edward H. White II, Gemini 4 prime crew pilot, prepares for working in a zero-gravity environment. White stands on a Balance Extravehicular Training Aircraft, held off the ground by a .001th-inch cushion of air and using a zero-gravity integral propulsion unit to self-maneuvering. His spacesuit is fully pressurized and the simulated umbilical line is floated with air pads to create a realistic training condition.

Physical Fitness


On June 1, 1965, astronaut James A. McDivitt, Genini 4 mission command pilot, lies on a tilt table as Dr. Charles A. Berry, chief of Center Medical Programs at MSC, Houston, takes his blood pressure. McDivitt and astronaut Edward H. White II participated in preflight physicals at the Aero Medical Area, MSC, Merritt Island in preparation for the four-day Gemini 4 mission and orbiting the Earth 62 times. Dr. Gordon Benson, NASA Physician, stands at the rear, overseeing the tests.



On May 21, 1965, another preflight test astronaut Edward H. White II, pilot of the Gemini 4 prime crew, completed was a wet mock simulation exercise. The Gemini 4 mission will last four days and circle the Earth 62 times with White and astronaut James A. McDivitt on board as prime crew.

In the Pool


On March 29, 1965, at Ellington Air Force Base in Texas, Gemini 4 crew, astronauts James A. McDivitt, (left), command pilot and Edward H. White II, pilot, participate in water egress training.

Relaxing but No


On May 21, 1965, astronaut James A. McDivitt, Gemini 4 command pilot, undergoes a weight and balance test at Cape Kennedy, Florida, as part of a wet mock simulation exercise.

Console Simulations


Gemini 4 was the first mission to be partially controlled from Houston's Mission Control Center. Here flight director Eugene F. Kranz participates in a simulation at the Flight Director console on the Manned Spacecraft Center site.

Gemini-Titan Vehicle


On April 14, 1965, the Gemini 4 spacecraft is lifted to the white room at Pad 19 for soft mating with the Titan launch vehicle.

Tasty Meals for Space


Packages of food prepared for the Gemini 4 four-day flight include beef and gravy, peaches, strawberry cereal cubes and beef sandwiches. The dehydrated foods will be reconstituted with a water gun.

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Christine Lunsford
Producer and Contributing Writer

Christine Lunsford joined the team in 2010 as a freelance producer and later became a contributing writer, covering astrophotography images, astronomy photos and amazing space galleries and more. During her more than 10 years with, oversaw the site's monthly skywatching updates and produced overnight features and stories on the latest space discoveries. She enjoys learning about subjects of all kinds.