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Celebrating Dr. Wernher von Braun’s 100th Birthday

Tonight we will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Dr. Wernher von Braun’s birthday, appropriately at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, home of Space Camp. Dr. von Braun, the first director of NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, was a pioneer of modern rocketry and one of the first champions of human space exploration. He was an inspiration to me and one of my biggest role models.

There are numerous quotes by him that I love, but one of my favorites is “Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.” He also said, "I have learned to use the word 'impossible' with the greatest caution."

It is the von Braun team’s work that inspired Huntsville’s nickname, “The Rocket City,” which is where our team name, “The Rocket City Space Pioneers” originated.

Tonight, Dr. von Braun’s daughter, Dr. Margrit von Braun, will speak at her father’s “birthday party.” I look forward to celebrating his life. He brought so much to the space industry and to humankind.

My friend, Homer Hickam, author and “Rocket Boy,” told his story about Dr. von Braun in an article today in The Huntsville Times.  I look forward to sitting with Homer tonight and sharing stories.

Homer has been a great supporter of the Rocket City Space Pioneers. He spoke at the press conference announcing our entry into the GLXP competition, and he served as MC at our recent “Name the Lander” contest kick-off event.

His latest book is Crater, which will be published very soon, but here is a surprise: an Amazon Single memoir, available for e-readers for $1.99 now. Read all about it here

Homer continues to be an advocate of space exploration and a friend to the space industry. 

I know tonight’s gathering will be inspirational and fun.  We owe Dr. von Braun much, and he deserves to be honored on his 100th birthday! I'll write about the celebration next week.






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