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  NASA astronaut Dale Gardner (1948-2014) (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   NASA astronaut Dale Gardner (1948-2014)
Robert Pearlman
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collectSPACE
Dale Gardner, jetpack-flying astronaut who salvaged satellites, dies at 65

NASA astronaut Dale Gardner, who in 1984 achieved the world's first space salvage during his second shuttle mission, died on Wednesday (Feb. 19). He was 65.

Gardner made history becoming the last of six astronauts to use the manned maneuvering unit (MMU) jetpack as he worked to return two malfunctioning satellites to Earth.

He died Wednesday from a sudden brain aneurysm. News of his passing was shared via social media on Thursday, with the Association of Space Explorers and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida noting his death.

One of the so-called "Thirty-Five New Guys" (or "TFNG") who NASA recruited in 1978 to train for its then-new space shuttle, Gardner flew twice as a mission specialist aboard the orbiters Challenger and Discovery in August 1983 and November 1984, respectively.

A moment of silence can be signified by a reply with no words and only a period.

Shuttle Endeavour
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sts205cdr
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Mike Dixon
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Greggy_D
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Damn... never expected to read this today. One of my favorite TFNGs.

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Dave Shayler
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I was so saddened to learn of the passing of Dale. Though I was never fortunate to meet him, I heard many great stores of his skills and experiences on STS-8 from Bill Thornton and STS-51A from Joe Allen. My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.

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Daniel Lazecky
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Honour and Glory...

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Robert Pearlman
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I never had the chance to meet Dale Gardner.

In the 15 years we've been tracking astronaut appearances on this site, I think I may have listed an event for him just once.

I had plans to reach out to him, and kept putting it off for no other reason than I figured there would be time to do so later.

My interest in making contact was because of this...

...Gardner wore this two-piece suit onboard space shuttle Discovery during the STS-51A mission in 1984.

It sat in front of me as I wrote about his passing. There are times when artifacts speak to us more powerfully; the sight of the empty suit hit pretty hard as I worked to summarize the life of the man who once wore it into orbit.

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