May 26th Sally Ride Day

The first American woman in space, Dr. Sally Ride was a mission specialist on STS-7, the Challenger shuttle craft, 1983.  The physical rigors required to serve as an astronaut are daunting. That’s why military men are normally selected to be astronauts, but Sally Ride was able to match what any man could withstand and became the first woman in space after nearly three years of training.

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Born on May 26th, 1951, today was chosen to celebrate her accomplishments because it would be her birthday. Unfortunately she died in 2012 of cancer. She also went into space in 1984 and was training for her third flight when the Challenger disaster occurred.

Space shuttle Challenger landing

She was one of the few that supported the idea of a faulty o-ring causing the explosion. It did not make her particularly popular among the NASA upper management but she was right! Maybe her 343 hours in space gave her the leg up.

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It’s sad to think that our space program barely exists anymore. If it were not for the private companies now launching space craft people such as Sally Ride might be forgotten.

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How to celebrate – Remember Sally Ride by celebrating her birthday today. Watch any You Tube footage you can find of her in space. Check out all the other women who have served as astronauts.

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