Wednesday, September 19, 2012

It's Aerospace Week: All Those Astronauts And More

My astronaut-inspired son.
It's National Aerospace Week and I'm writing about the topic with one more history lesson today.

John Glenn and space exploration are synonymous.  He is from New Concord, Ohio and still lives in the state.

The nation just mourned the passing of the man to first set foot on the moon--Neil Armstrong.  He's from Wapakoneta, Ohio.

In fact, NASA proudly reports 25 of its astronauts have Ohio roots.  The list includes four women, most notably Judy Resnick who perished with the Challenger disaster in 1986.

The NASA website makes the argument that Ohio produced so many because, first, the Wright Brothers inspired a generation and then the fact that some of the first and most prominent astronauts  were from Ohio inspired a second. 

NASA is right, but it's more than that.  The heritage inspired aerospace-related skills-seeking among a horde of Ohioans well beyond these 25 individuals.

That's what distinguishes Ohio most of all.

The challenge is to inspire the next generation. More on that tomorrow.

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