Shannon W. Lucid
USA Inducted in 1990
Shannon Lucid, set a time record for a U.S. astronaut in space and in the world for time spent by a woman in space.
Only American woman to serve aboard the Mir Space Station.
Shannon Lucid was born on January 14, 1943, in Shanghai, China, but considers Bethany, Oklahoma, her hometown. The daughter of missionaries, she was born as a captive along with her parents, aunts, an uncle, and her grandparents, in the Japanese Army’s Chapei Civil Assembly Center prison camp in China during World War II. In 1944, Shannon and her parents were repatriated to the United States as part of a peaceful exchange of noncombatant citizens. After her family spent the rest of the war years in Fort Worth, Texas, they returned to China, but eventually settled in Oklahoma.
Shannon Lucid graduated from Bethany High School in 1960; received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Oklahoma in 1963, and Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees, both in Biochemistry, from the University of Oklahoma in 1970 and 1973, respectively.
Lucid was a teaching assistant at the University of Oklahoma’s Department of Chemistry from 1963 to 1964, then a senior laboratory technician at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation from 1964 to 1966 and a chemist at Kerr-McGee, Oklahoma City, 1966 to 1968. In 1969, she became a graduate assistant at the University of Oklahoma Health Science Center’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. She was a research associate with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation in Oklahoma City from 1974 until her selection to the astronaut candidate-training program in January 1978. Shannon Lucid is a commercial, instrument, and multi-engine rated pilot; she had dreamed of being a pilot since her first airplane ride, at the age of five.
Dr. Lucid became an astronaut in August 1979, and has flown on five space flights. She has logged 5,354 hours (223.08 days) in space, which was the most by any woman until 2007 when her record was broken by Peggy Whitson. She served as a mission specialist on STS-51G, STS-34, STS-43, STS-58, and as a Board Engineer 2 on Russia’s Mir Space Station.
Lucid first entered space aboard STS-51G Discovery (June 17 to 24, 1985), launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida (KSC), as were all her shuttle missions. She helped deploy communications satellites for Mexico, the Arab League, and the United States. The crew also used the Remote Manipulator System to deploy and later retrieve the SPARTAN satellite, which performed seventeen hours of x-ray astronomy experiments while separated from the Space Shuttle. STS-51G traveled 2.5 million miles in 112 orbits of the Earth in 169 hours and 39 minutes before landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California.
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