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20 April 2012
Sadness, frustration, and ultimately admiration surround space shuttle Discovery’s welcome to Smithsonian
On Thursday, I went to the Udvar-Hazy Center to witness Discovery being rolled into the center’s space hangar. There, former U.S. Senator John Glenn, who became the oldest person in space when he launched aboard Discovery in 1998, gave a five-minute speech about the legacy of the space program, praising the ship behind him.
“Space shuttle Discovery is the star with the most extensive record of all the shuttle fleet,” he said, before expressing sadness that the shuttle program had ended, perhaps before its time. As he turned to sit, a man behind me in the audience said quietly, “Godspeed, John Glenn.”