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Bits and Pieces

Chris Hadfield Sees Flights to Mars in Our Future

By Ian Brown, Editor - Bits and Pieces, EAA 657159

At a packed Theatre in the Woods presentation Tuesday night at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, we were presented with an event that was rare even in the context of Oshkosh. Four "generations" of astronauts were interviewed by David Hartman, actor and ex-host of Good Morning America.

Those astronauts were:

Charlie Duke, 78, a member of the Apollo 16 team and the 10th man to walk on the moon.
Charlie Precourt, 58, piloted or commanded several missions to the Russian Mir Space Station and spoke highly of his Russian comrades.
Chris Ferguson, 52, commander of the last U.S. space shuttle flight.
Chris Hadfield, 54, from Canada, just returned from a six-month stint as commander of the International Space Station.

All four astronauts were now working for different companies, but they shared the same vision: a manned flight to Mars. They collectively concluded that it was simply a matter of when.

Each of these speakers was incredibly articulate, and a really riveting discussion point was when Commander Hadfield was asked what it actually feels like to step out into space for the first time.

The relatively tiny group of aviators at Oshkosh also received a personal message from two astronauts in the space station recorded for us earlier that day. See the videos here.

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