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What everyone in the astronaut corps shares in common is not gender or ethnic background, but motivation, perseverance, and desire - the desire to participate in a voyage of discovery.
I was the first Navy, Marine or Air Force person who had been an astronaut to return back to the Air Force. I had certain expectations about what would be a reasonable and desirable position to be assigned to after my years of service.
I thought the attractions of being an astronaut were actually, not so much the Moon, but flying in a completely new medium.
I wanted to be a secret agent and an astronaut, preferably at the same time.
Being an astronaut is a wonderful career. I feel very privileged. But what I really hope for young people is that they find a career they're passionate about, something that's challenging and worthwhile.
I stayed in the astronaut program until 1993. People ask me why I left. I thought I had a lot of things to contribute that would be difficult to do if I stayed. I thought I could have a stronger voice as an advocate for space exploration. So I ended up starting my own technology consulting company.
Sometimes people ask me how difficult the astronaut program was, but being in Sierra Leone, being responsible for the health of more than 200 people, seven days a week, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, at age 26 - that prepared me to take on a lot of different challenges.
There is no one area of chemical engineering that specifically helped me in my career as an astronaut, it was more the general education in engineering. Also, it was a very difficult and rigorous course. So, it made me strong and resourceful.
To become an astronaut, someone has to have a dream of his own to do something that he or she has always wanted to do, then commit himself to making that dream come true.
My neighborhood was rough, but I live a great life now. I don't fight that much now. I don't look for it anyway, but if someone hits your mother, whether you're a star, an accountant, or an astronaut or anything... I mean it's your mother, so I lost my mind.
Being a rock & roll star has become as legitimate a career option as being an astronaut or a policeman or a fireman.
I am the astronaut of boxing. Joe Louis and Dempsey were just jet pilots. I'm in a world of my own.
I think there would be no shortage of applicants to the government astronaut corps to be settlers on the planet Mars. And I think this would be very inspiring.
I like acting for now. But after seeing Apollo 13, what I really want to do is to be an astronaut. I'm dying to go to a space camp next summer!
I want to be a lawyer, a dancer, an actress, a mother, a wife, a children's author, a distance runner, a poet, a pianist, a pet store owner, an astronaut, an environmental and humanitarian activist, a psychiatrist, a ballet teacher, and the first woman president.
I wanted to make sure that the man who found the genie would not take terrible advantage of her, so he needed to be a person of integrity and honor - which is why I made the male lead an astronaut. The rest, as they say, is history.
On the day I started college in 1979, no woman had ever been on the United States Supreme Court or served as the Speaker of the House. None had been an astronaut or the solo anchor of a network evening news broadcast. Not one had been president of an Ivy League college or run a serious campaign for president.
Dee Dee Myers
And now for Return to Flight, I'm chief of robotics working in the astronaut office in Houston, as a Canadian.
Then there was the challenge to keep doing better and better, to fly the best test flight that anybody had ever flown. That led to my being recognized as one of the more experienced test pilots, and that led to the astronaut business.
In the astronaut business - the shuttle is a very complicated vehicle; it's the most complicated flying machine ever built. And in the astronaut business, we have a saying, which is, 'There is no problem so bad that you can't make it worse.'
We have never lost a crew member on the space station, but of course, the Columbia accident. I was - I'd already been an astronaut for a decade when the crew of Columbia was killed. And I went through test pilot school. Rick Husband and I were out at Edwards at test pilot school together. He was the commander of Columbia.
I cannot join the space program and restart my life as an astronaut, but this opportunity to connect my abilities as an educator with my interests in history and space is a unique opportunity to fulfill my early fantasies.
As an astronaut, you have a very defined set of tasks to do. Those tasks may require you to work 60, 70 or 80 hours a week.
The clothes are different: pre-dog, I used to be very finicky and self-conscious about how I looked; now I schlep around in the worst clothing - big heavy boots, baggy old sweaters, a hooded down parka from L.L. Bean that makes me look like an astronaut.
My obsession with outer space is my way of being different. I make astronaut music. It takes an astronaut so long to get to space - that's how long it takes to catch up on my music.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
John F. Kennedy
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