Saturday, June 12, 2010

First Native Houstonian astronaut set for launch

We all know NASA is in Houston, but it is almost unbelievable after all these years only one Native Houstonian has become an astronaut.

The first Native Houstonian astronaut, Shannon Walker, is set to lift off Tuesday in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft. On her first spaceflight, Dr. Walker will participate on a long-duration mission to the International Space Station. She will serve as a flight engineer and conduct research on board the station during Expedition 24 and Expedition 25.

Dr. Walker was born in Houston and grew up on the southwest side of town. She attended Parker Elementary School, Johnston Middle School and graduated from Westbury Senior High School (class of 1983). She received a bachelor's in physics as well as a master's and doctorate in space physics from Rice University.

She was selected by NASA to become an astronaut in 2004 following more than a decade of work in the local space industry.

Dr. Walker returns to Earth in November.

Dr. Walker bio

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