Laika's trust, Laika's willingness, Laika's love was the price paid. Laika, a small stray, was trained for a Russian space flight and sent in to orbit alone aboard Sputnik II on November 3, 1957. She was the first animal to orbit in space. She died 4 or 5 hours after lift off from stress and heat exhaustion.
She died sooner than expected during the flight although it was known from the start she would not be returning. One technician from the launch said, "after placing Laika in the container and before closing the hatch, we kissed her nose and wished her bon voyage, knowing that she would not survive the flight." Then Laika was shot in to space.
Sad. Such trust betrayed.
On planet Earth, people celebrated holidays. The Thanksgiving bird was carved. Champagne corks popped on New Year's Eve as 1957 slipped in to 1958. Circling overhead the body of a little dead dog. A dog who trusted humans too much and jumped in to a capsule.
The months passed. Painted eggs were eaten. After Easter 1958, Laika was in the sky no more. Her capsule fell out of orbit and her body burned up.
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