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Spectators vow to return Saturday for next SpaceX launch attempt

Large crowds formed on Max Brewer Bridge before scrub

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – Immediately after SpaceX scrubbed Wednesday’s scheduled launch of two astronauts to the International Space Station, many rain-soaked spectators lining the Indian River vowed to return for the next attempt this weekend.

“We prepared ourselves (for the scrub),” said Susan Cullom, who traveled with her family from Wesley Chapel to witness the historic launch. “We knew it was a possibility and we’ll be back on Saturday.”

[MORE COVERAGE: Calm under pressure: 2 NASA astronauts prepare to return glory of human spaceflight to America | President Trump will attend next SpaceX launch attempt at Kennedy Space Center]

By the time President Donald Trump was descending toward the Kennedy Space Center on board Air Force One, thousands had packed the Max Brewer Bridge in Titusville trying to catch a glimpse of the famous aircraft and, they hoped, the first launch of astronauts from American soil in nine years.

"This is the culmination of what we've been waiting for," said Chris Marburger, a Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex tour bus escort.

Since Marburger remains furloughed from his job due to the pandemic, he hoped to catch the launch with other spectators along the Indian River.

“We tell the story (about the space program),” Marburger said. “And now I get to watch. I don’t get to tell. I would rather be telling.”

Bill Flanders, who has been witnessing launches from the Space Coast since the Apollo moon shots, is enthusiastic about private companies returning humans to orbit.

“We trust it’s going to be a rebirth,” Flanders said. “It’s been needed. And if this goes well I think it’s going to be a bright future for the Titusville and Brevard area here.”

[READ MORE: How News 6 plans to capture historic launch views | What happens if NASA astronauts need to abort?]

Laura Ferris, who fondly recalls seeing the space shuttle blast off, made sure to get a prime viewing spot for the scheduled SpaceX mission.

“I saw the first launch when I was four years old and I saw the last launch in 2011,” Ferris said. “I wasn’t going to miss this.”

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