On Oct. 8, BAMA members got to spend an afternoon with an astronaut when we were the presenting sponsor at an event at the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI) with Astronaut Story Musgrave, the only person to fly on all five space shuttles.
Story Musgrave is a man with a humorous, fascinating and impressive background. During the afternoon, Musgrave talked about his life, entertaining the audience with tales of his youth, and spoke about the Hubble Missions. His talk was followed by a film on MOSI’s five-story IMAX® screen on the Hubble Missions.
Musgrave was born in 1935 on a dairy farm in Stockbridge, MA. He was in the forests alone at 3 and by 5 floated his homebuilt rafts on the rivers. He rode combines at 5, drove trucks and tractors at 10 and when alone in remote fields, repaired them by 13.
He never finished high school, instead running off to Korea with the U.S. Marines where he was an aircraft electrician and an engine mechanic. He started flying with the Marines and over the next 55 years accumulated 18,000 hours in over 160 aircraft. He is a parachutist with over 800 freefalls.
Although never earning a high school diploma, interesting enough, he went on to obtain seven graduate degrees in math, computers, chemistry, medicine, physiology, literature and psychology. Working as trauma surgeon along with a 30-year astronaut career.
Story was an NASA astronaut for over 30 years and flew on six spaceflights. He performed the first shuttle spacewalk on Challenger's first flight, was a pilot on an astronomy mission, conducted two classified DOD missions, was the lead spacewalker on the Hubble Telescope repair mission and on his last flight, he operated an electronic chip manufacturing satellite on Columbia.
To read more about Story Musgrave, his biography is titled, “The Way of Water.”