Clarence W. Pittman, 76, a retired aerospace engineer who was part of the manned space program from Mercury to Apollo during the early 1960s and 1970s, died Nov. 16 at Inova Alexandria Hospital. He had ischemic bowel disease.
Mr. Pittman was manager of Houston Operations for TRW Inc., providing planning and management assistance to NASA. On April 17, 1970, he was on the rescue team for Apollo 13. He was working at the Space Center in Houston as a Mission Control guidance engineer when Apollo 13's mission to the moon had to be aborted.
Mr. Pittman was a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his efforts on the operations team.
During the energy crisis of the 1980s, he was reassigned to Washington to focus on energy-related technologies. He retired early from TRW and joined NASA, where he was responsible for the satellite communication program. Mr. Pittman, who received a NASA Distinguished Public Service Award, retired in 1996.
Mr. Pittman was born in Covington, Ky. He graduated summa cum laude in engineering physics and received a master's degree in electrical engineering from Ohio State University. He served in the Air Force during the Korean War.
He was a member of the American Association of Advancement of Science's Senior Scientist and Engineers program and several other professional fraternities.
He served on the board of the Marina Towers Condominium and was a consultant to the former National Institute of Standards and Technology. He also served on the Small Business Administration's Senior Council of Retired Executives and helped Meals on Wheels.
He also was a member of the Old Presbyterian Meeting House in Alexandria.
His marriage to Elaine Pittman ended in divorce.
Survivors include his wife, Annmarie Rogers Pittman of Alexandria; two children from his second marriage, Anthony Rogers Pittman of Alexandria and Darice Michelle Squires of League City, Texas; and two grandchildren.