an end to a 30-year legacy…

July 21, 2011 11:24pm
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Despite a horrendously scripted read (sorry, they can’t all be rocket scientists AND public speakers!), I thought this little thank-you clip to everyone in the space program from the astronauts about the Space Shuttle Atlantis while still docked at the International Space Station was a nice, little send off to the incredible, 30-year adventure in space exploration…

http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/videogallery/index.html?media_id=101162701

I know that there are a lot of nay-sayers who think that the shuttle was nothing but a ginormous waste of money (despite the fact that 30 years of space cost us the same as a single year of our wars these days), but aside from the financial debate, I sincerely hope that whatever’s next proceeds to prove me wrong here in the upcoming years and somehow manages to keep kids young and old excited about the prospects of exploring space because I know that it had a huge impact on me growing up.

I have fond memories of flipping through my Dad’s hard-cover National Geographic books talking about all of the planets and stars, and what we had learned about them thus far (back in the 80s, anyways). We built model rockets that we launched high into the air and my LEGO spacemen performed many a mission exploring the far surfaces of the living room floor, and frankly it all just made for a really neat childhood to grow up in. The idea of people traveling into space excited me in a big way and even if it didn’t result in my entertaining a career in aerospace myself, it’s still been awfully inspirational to know that somebody’s been doing it.

In short, I guess I just hope that my children and my children’s children still think of astronauts when asked what they want to be when they grow up.

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