Layoffs in Florida follow end of shuttle program

July 22, 2011 at 3:03 PM
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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla., July 22 (UPI) -- Layoffs of about 1,500 employees of space shuttle contractor United Space Alliance have begun in Florida following the program's final mission, officials said.

They are joining thousands of other space industry workers being let go as the shuttle program ends after Thursday's landing at the Kennedy Space Center of the shuttle Atlantis, Florida Today reported Friday.

"It was a great job," said Phil Meyer, who worked on the ships retrieving the shuttle's solid fuel boosters from the Atlantic Ocean after launches.

"I loved it," the 58-year-old resident of Cocoa Beach said. "I'm sorry to see it end."

Workers attended a United Space Alliance orientation and were given information related to things they will need to know while they are out of work, Florida Today reported.

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