Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day in Space

Here we are, one launch away from not having a manned space program. My last post was almost two years ago and at that time I was concerned with the lack of progress in the past 40 years--two more did not make much of a difference. Endeavour is on its way home today, Memorial Day, 2011. That leaves Atlantis in STS-135 as our last shot into space. A "resupply" and minor upgrade to the International Space Station.
At least we had the fortitude to complete the ISS.
This country is so fickle and it amazes me that we can be so heads-down on cell phones, video games, and the latest portable electronics and not look up at that vast open expanse and see the countless stars--then ignore it all and demand our government provide high-speed connections to read our e-mail.
We will shortly be left with no way to get an American into LEO on our own, let alone to the Moon or beyond. What a legacy to leave behind for our aging space adventurers; what a sad story to tell the the children and grandchildren of those who died, giving their life for the exploration of space. I visited the memorial before it was carved with the names of the Columbia crew. That is what we have on this Memorial Day: a legacy of triumph followed by loss--loss of a dream.

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