February 12, 2015 – On Saturday, May 30, 2015, Colorado Astronaut Kent Rominger will be among four space shuttle astronauts who will be inducted into the United States Astronaut Hall of Fame. The public ceremony will be held at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s Space Shuttle Atlantis attraction. John Grunsfeld, Ph. D., Steven Lindsey, Kent Rominger, and M. Rhea Seddon, M.D. will join the ranks of well-known space explorers including Alan Shepard, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
This year marks the historic 25th anniversary of the Hall of Fame, which was conceived in the 1980s by the six remaining Mercury astronauts as a place where space explorers could be remembered. Past Hall of Fame inductees include Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Skylab and Space Shuttle astronauts.
This year’s inductees comprise the 14th group of space shuttle astronauts named to the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, bringing the total number of members to 91. Among this year’s inductees are a robotics expert who conducted three missions to repair the Hubble Space Telescope; two former military aviators who became space shuttle pilots and commanders on key shuttle missions to build the International Space Station; and a medical doctor and payload commander on life sciences missions who was one of NASA’s first female astronauts.
Rominger was born August 7, 1956, in Del Norte, Colorado. He graduated from Del Norte High School, Del Norte, Colorado, in 1974 and received a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from Colorado State University in 1978, before pursuing a master of science degree in aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School in 1987.
Rominger received his commission through the Aviation Reserve Officer Candidate (AVROC) Program in 1979, and was designated a Naval Aviator in September 1980. Following training in the F-14 Tomcat, he was assigned to Fighter Squadron Two (VF-2) from October 1981 to January 1985 aboard the USS Ranger and USS Kitty Hawk.
While assigned to VF-2 Rominger attended the Navy Fighter Weapons School (Topgun). In 1987 he completed the Naval Postgraduate School/Test Pilot School Cooperative Program, and was assigned as F-14 Project Officer to the Carrier Suitability Branch of the Strike Aircraft Test Directorate at Patuxent River, Maryland. During his tour of duty Rominger completed the initial carrier suitability sea trials of the F-14B, logging the first aircraft carrier arrestment and catapult launch in the upgraded Tomcat. In September 1990 he reported to Fighter Squadron Two Hundred Eleven (VF-211) where he served as Operations Officer and completed a Desert Storm Deployment to the Arabian Gulf aboard USS Nimitz.
Rominger was selected by NASA in March 1992 and reported to the Johnson Space Center in August 1992. Rominger was initially assigned to work technical issues for the Astronaut Office Operations Development Branch. He also served as Chief of the Astronaut Office Shuttle Operations Branch, Deputy Director, Flight Crew Operations, and Chief of the Astronaut Corps. .A veteran of five space flights, Rominger logged over 1,600 hours in space. He flew as pilot on STS-73 (1995), STS-80 (1996) and STS-85 (1997), and was the crew commander on STS-96 (1999) and STS-100 (2001). In April 2005 he retired from the Navy.
Rominger retired from NASA in September 2006 to accept a position with ATK Launch Systems, Utah.
Astronaut Hall of Fame Inductees for 2015:
John Grunsfeld, Ph. D. is a veteran of five space shuttle missions (STS-67/Endeavour, STS-81/Atlantis, STS-103/Discovery, STS-109/Columbia and STS-125/Atlantis), including three missions to repair the Hubble Space Telescope. On STS-125/Atlantis, the fifth and final Hubble servicing mission, Grunsfeld performed three of the five spacewalks, spending nearly 21 hours repairing the ailing telescope. Throughout his career, Grunsfeld has logged more than 58 days in space, including 58 hours and 30 minutes on eight spacewalks.
Steven W. Lindsey (Colonel, USAF, Ret.) was selected as a NASA astronaut in March 1995. A veteran of five space shuttle flights, Lindsey has logged more than 1,510 hours in space. He served as pilot of two space shuttle flights and mission commander on three, including STS-104/Atlantis and STS-121/Discovery, the second Return to Flight mission after the loss of Columbia. Lindsey last served as commander of STS-133, the 39th and final mission of Space Shuttle Discovery, during which he and his crew delivered crucial components to the International Space Station, including Robonaut 2, or R2, the first human-like robot in space.
Kent V. Rominger (Captain, USN, Ret.) is a five-time space shuttle astronaut who has logged more than 1,600 hours in space. He flew as pilot on three space shuttle flights and mission commander on two, including STS-96/Discovery, the first-ever docking of a space shuttle to the International Space Station. Rominger visited the space station again on STS-100/Endeavour, when he and his crew installed the Canadian-built Robotic Arm and the Rafaello Logistics Module, completing the most complex robotics flight in the history of the Space Shuttle Program.
Dr. M. “Rhea” Seddon is a three-time space shuttle astronaut. She was selected by NASA in 1978 as one of the first six women to enter the astronaut program. On her final flight, STS-58/Columbia, Seddon was payload commander in charge of all science activities. This life science research flight is recognized by NASA as the most successful and efficient Spacelab mission ever flown. In all, Seddon has spent a total of 30 days in space.
The 2015 Astronaut Hall of Fame Induction will take place at 2 p.m. ET on Saturday, May 30. Admittance into the ceremony is included in admission to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex; however, seating is limited and is available on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, visit www.KennedySpaceCenter.com.
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