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High Flight(13 posts)

High FlightAkirasho
Feb 1, 2003 7:51 AM
High Flight

Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth and danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth of sun-split clouds... and done a hundred things you have not dreamed of... wheeled and soared and swung high in the sunlit silence,

Hov'ring there, I've chased the shouting winds along, and flung my eager craft through footless halls of air.

Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace where never lark, nor even eagle flew...

And, while with silent, lifting mind I've trod the high untrespassed sanctity of space, put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

By John Gillispie Magee Jr.


We abide.

Remain In Light.
For All Mankind. Poignant.Sintesi
Feb 1, 2003 12:29 PM
If any of you want to be reminded what it's all about check this link and play For All Mankind. You'll need the latest Windows Media 9 player to do it. The closing credits put me to tears. It's true, there's really nothing more noble than exploration for all mankind.
curious about somethingDougSloan
Feb 1, 2003 3:42 PM
I feel for them and their families, too. But, I wonder why it seems so much more tragic when 7 are killed in a space disaster than several hundred in a plane crash. Maybe it's just so many eyes on the spacecraft. Maybe because it's so rare. Seems strange, though.

curious about somethingmickey-mac
Feb 1, 2003 3:52 PM
I was thinking the same thing this morning. I think the major factor is that many people consider space explorers to be heroes who are taking great risks for the sake of science, while airline passengers are just going from place A to place B in a mode of transportation that is safer than most. It's sort of similar to the attention that is devoted to police officers who are killed in the line of duty, while killings of innocent people who are no less important go unreported.
Good observation. The feelings are a little more intense here.Tig
Feb 1, 2003 4:58 PM
Living in Clear Lake where NASA's Johnson Space Center is located, the impact is much more powerful than across most of the country. People here love their work and being a part of manned space flight. Most of the astronauts are a part of our community and are our friends and neighbors, not heros (but respected as much). What happened to them hurts us all rather deeply. The mood has been somber everywhere I've been today.

I didn't find out until I got home from this morning's ride. I was floored. I worked at JSC when we lost Challenger, and for many years afterward. I didn't know any of this crew, but several other past and current astronauts. It still hurts. I really feel for their families.

Most people have no idea what the tens of thousands of technological spin-offs from the space program are, and how they've positively affected us all, and for many years. The thousands of benefits in the medical field alone have been worth the NASA budget a few times over. The infared ear thermometer parents and clinics use on kids was developed for space flight. Even the bicycling industry has used many of the carbon fiber advances created by NASA. Ceramic engine components in Ford's 100,000 mile motors are yet another common example. This is one government agency that at least benefits all mindkind.
Good observation. The feelings are a little more intense here.Skip
Feb 1, 2003 6:43 PM
God speed.
Here's the URL to the online NASA Spinoff magazineTig
Feb 1, 2003 7:56 PM
There are past and present issues available in PDF format. I had no idea there are so many common spinoffs that started at NASA until I read a few issues over the years. I haven't even scratched the surface! There are still over 15 years of past Spinoff issues not available online.

The risk and expense of manned spaceflight has many wonderful rewards for us all. From the most noble life saving medicine or medical test equipment, right down to the titanium bike frames many of us ride. In such a blessed country that we live in, we take so much for granted.
curious about somethingAlpedhuez55
Feb 1, 2003 6:39 PM
I think National Pride comes into play. We think of ourselves as technology leader. The Space Shuttle and Space Program are a symbol of that. When there are failures like this one, we take them to heart. I am sure it was much the same for France & Britain when the Concorde crashed.

They do it so well that we think it is routine. But it is far from it. It is very exact with small margin of error. I slightly steep angle and you can burn up on re-entry. It was a frozen gasket that caused the Challenger disaster. It is looking like a few damaged tiles led to this. I am sure NASA will figure out what needs to be done.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the loved ones of the crew.

Mike Y.
curious about somethingClydeTri
Feb 1, 2003 7:41 PM
Maybe because they are taking a risk for mankind...hopping a commercial airliner is safer statistically than driving your car to the grocery store. They are willing to push the envelope of our existance and make for a better future.

Huntsville Alabama here, home of NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and the birthplace of the space program. It hits hard here. We have schools named after Chafee, White, Grissom, and Challenger.
curious about somethingSintesi
Feb 2, 2003 3:58 AM
Yeah, these are the people who are going to change the world. I think of the Age of Exploration, Columbus, Ponce de Leon, Magellan, etc.... Regardless of the social and cultural repurcussions that we bicker about today, their feats were astounding, their discoveries earthshaking. Astronauts of today are taking the first baby steps into the universe around us, at incredible risk, at incredible expense, utilizing the very pinnacle of technical and scientific knowhow mankind can muster. And for what? To gain new knowledge, as simple a desire as that; to find a way for the expansion of human existence and understanding. Nobody knows what the payout will be or if there will be one. These people are doing it on the basis of hope, curiosity, daring to dream of a different future. That, to me, is eternally noble and one of the few things that makes me glad to be human. Sorry if I'm getting carried away (I do that plenty), but these people who died and the ones before them are heroes in my book.
curious about somethingRCA
Feb 2, 2003 8:20 AM
Good point Doug. My wife and I got up this morning and read the Toronto paper and the first ten pages had the disaster and rightly so. But back on page 20 we learned that 7 kids on a high school hiking/skiing outing in B.C were killed in an avalanche yesterday. May all 14 people Rest in Peace
..or Aids, hunger, access to healthcare. More than 7/day. HmmnmSpunout
Feb 2, 2003 8:58 AM
check thislongfellow68
Feb 3, 2003 5:08 AM