John Young

I was 14 when Space Shuttle Columbia first flew.  It was the first space mission that I followed from beginning to end.

I got up early the morning of April 12, 1981 and whispered ‘godspeed’ as she began her ascent into the sky.  I have no memory of any of the Apollo launches as I was only 5 when they stopped.

Two days later, I watched in awe as a spacecraft landed safely back to Earth, to be used again in a later mission.

And then out came these two people:

Astronauts in general were always my heroes, but these two were the first to fly the ship that I’ve always considered my shuttle, Columbia.

Shuttle commander John Young and Shuttle pilot Robert Crippen.

Today we lost one of them.

As usual these days, I found out via Facebook.

As usual I find myself feeling older, as the icons of my life die.

Godspeed, John Young.