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Larry Gee papers and space memorabilia

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSA 276

Scope and Contents

The Larry Gee papers and space memorabilia document Larry Gee's 22 year career as an engineer in the aerospace industry. Memorabilia and artifacts include commemorative space flight flags, Space Shuttle Mission patches, commemorative pins, Apollo 11 anniversary memorabilia, Columbia commemorative coin, DVDs, astronaut space shuttle crew photographs, data sheets, awards, certificates, newsletters and various documents from Gee's work with Space Shuttle main engines, Atlas engines, Delta engines, the International Space Station, THAAD (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) and other space programs. Most of the adhesive patches include a description of the insignia on the back. 


  • 1988 - 2011
  • Other: Majority of material found within 1988 - 2005


Language of Materials

Collection material is in English.

Access Information

The collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Portions of material in this collection are in the public domain. Other material copyrights held by Purdue University or original creator. Consult with Purdue University Archives and Special Collections prior to reproduction of materials.

Biographical Information

Born April 18, 1951, in Klamath Falls, Oregon, Gee is the third of seven children (four sons and three daughters) of Jeannie Sun Chan and Tommy Won Gee. His mother and father were both born in Toishan, Southern China, emigrated from China to America and became naturalized citizens of the United States. Gee and his six siblings were all born in the United States. It is interesting to note that all seven Gee children are graduates of Purdue University. Gee completed both a B.S. Mechanical Engineering 1975 and M.S. Engineering 1984 at Purdue; in addition, he completed an M.B.A. 1989 from California Lutheran University.

Gee lived in Logansport, Indiana, from the ages of four through eighteen where he graduated from Logansport High School in 1969. Upon his graduation from Purdue University, his first job as an engineer was that of a Maintenance Engineer/Power Engineer with PPG in New Martinsville, West Virginia. Gee went on to hold engineering positions with Delco Electronics/GM, Kokomo, Indiana, as a Machine Design Engineer; Detroit Diesel Allison Transmission, Indianapolis, Indiana, as a Production Engineer and Biosound, Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana, as a Senior Manufacturing Engineer.

In 1985 Gee was contacted by a California firm, Cilco, Inc., due to his work in the ultrasonic imaging field. This led to his engineering career in California as he accepted a position as a Project Engineer with Cilco, Inc., Pomona, California. He later worked as a Manufacturing Engineer with Viking Connectors, Chatsworth, California, and Senior Manufacturing Engineer with DDC Pertec, Chatsworth, California. Gee joined Rocketdyne {Rockwell International, later Boeing Corporation then United Technologies Corporation), Canoga Park, California, in 1988 as a Senior Quality Engineer where he began working in the aerospace industry. It was here that he participated in programs such as the Space Shuttle Main Engine Turbopumps, International Space Station, Atlas and Delta rocket engines, RS-68 and J-2X pre-production rockets, as well as THAAD (anti-missile program). Gee later worked at Boeing Corporation in Long Beach, California, on the C-17 Globemaster III ("Jumbo Jet"). Gee participated in more than 100 successful rocket launches, including over 50 Space Shuttle launches, during his career but is particularly fond of the Space Shuttle Endeavour. He initially toured the Palmdale facility in 1991 where the Endeavour was being built. In 2012 Gee watched the Endeavour, now retired from the fleet, being flown into Los Angeles on top of a specially fitted Boeing 747, and again followed its final historic journey through the streets of Los Angeles to the California Science Center where it is now on exhibit. Gee retired in 2006 from United Technologies Corporation and in 2007 from Boeing Corporation.

Larry Gee and his wife Susan B. Sutphin live in Simi Valley, California, a community northwest of Los Angeles. They are avid travelers and have visited all seven continents.


As told by Larry Gee, March 20, 2013.


2.00 Cubic Feet


Most of the artifacts have been grouped by type and placed in chronological order or STS number when possible.

Custodial History

The collection was donated by Larry Gee to Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering, April 13, 2012. The papers were then transferred to the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries, by Laura M. Edwards, Senior Director of Development, Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering on April 17, 2012.

Acquisition Information

Transferred to Purdue University Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries, by Laura M. Edwards, Senior Director of Development, Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering on April 17, 2012.

Processing Information

All materials have been housed in acid-free folders and acid-free boxes. Polyester sleeves were used where warranted. The Space Shuttle patches have been housed in their own small, labeled box to aid researchers. This box can be found within box 1.
Larry Gee papers and space memorabilia
Under Review
Mary A. Sego
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
Second edition. Collection description first completed 2013-01-14.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States