Despite hundreds of professional photographers covering today’s shuttle launch, an image taken on an iPhone by an unemployed event planner from Hoboken is the most memorable – and the most viral.
Stefanie Gordon, 33, was on a flight from New York to Palm Beach International Airport this morning when she was awakened by an announcement from the pilot. “I was at the Yankees - Red Sox game in the Bronx last night so I didn’t get much sleep,” she said in an interview over the phone this afternoon. “The pilot said, ‘If you all look out to the east you can see the space shuttle.’”
“I guess I woke up at just the right time,” she added.
Gordon, who happened to have her iPhone in hand, took a couple of photographs and a short video as the Space Shuttle Endeavour climbed through the clouds. She then uploaded the photograph to Twitpic and sent out a tweet. NASA retweeted her photo and media requests began pouring in.
“All of the sudden, it was all over the place,” she said. “BBC just sent me a tweet asking if they could use my photo, and of course I said yes!”
“It’s very overwhelming, I honestly did not expect this to blow up the way it did — I can’t keep up with it.”
As of 2:00pm, Gordon's photographs of the launch had been viewed nearly 200,000 times on Twitpic.