“Shipwreck in the Sky” is a fun little near-future story of a pioneering Air Force space test pilot. Originally published in March 1954 in Fantastic Universe, you’ll find that it did a pretty good job of predicting how space would be. But then, it throws in a little twist….
I’m not sure Binder captures the military on a mission/flight control mindset quite as well as he could have (unless you imagine the Colonel as being actually extremely stoic in his replies, in which case it does make sense). I’m afraid I didn’t quite capture the pilot voice correctly, though, so we’re even. (Maybe I need to rewatch The Right Stuff, to get in touch with my inner Chuck Yeager.)