Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Space Shuttle Returns

I have been so happy about the return of the Space Shuttle's to operational status, with the STS-121 mission, albeit in a test stage, that I almost forgot to blog about it.

This is a Very Good Thing!

I hope the President and Congress give budget authority to NASA for studies into a follow-on reusable, manned, atmospherically-maneuverable re-entry vehicle to replace the current Shuttle fleet and also authorize their procurement. That would be a lasting legacy of this presidency.

This mission also means a lot to me personally: Stephanie D. Wilson, a mission specialist on STS-121, is an African American. And an F-O-X Fox! A real Hottie!

Following in the footsteps of the following Pioneers:
  • Colonel Guion Bluford, USAF - the 1st Black American in space, STS-8, STS-61A, STS-39.
  • Dr. Ronald McNair, R.I.P., civilian - unfortunately the 1st Black to die in a spacecraft (Space Shuttle Challenger, January 28, 1986); STS-41B, STS-51L - the ill-fated Challenger Mission.
  • Colonel Frederick Gregory - USAF, STS-51B, STS-33, STS-44.
  • Brigadier General Charles Bolden, Jr., USMC - STS-61C, STS-31, STS-45, STS-60.
  • Mae Jamison, MD, civilian - 1st Black woman in space - STS-47.
  • Bernard Harris, MD, civilian - STS-55, STS-63.
  • Captain Winston Scott, USN - STS-72, STS-87.
  • Captain Robert Curbeam, USN - STS-85, STS-98, barely older than I am.
  • Lieutenant Colonel Michael Anderson, USAF, R.I.P. - STS-89, STS-107 - the deadly crash of the Space Shuttle Columbia, February 1, 2003.
While she is not Black, I am adding Dr. Judith A. Resnik, STS-41D, STS-51L to the list. I made her part of the family in 1986, and twenty years later, she is still remembered.

We owe you all a world of thanks.

I especially want to thank all of you for living my dream, as I enjoy it vicariously through all your accomplishments.

Stephanie, you go, girl!

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