Is It Worth the Risk?
The astronaut who commanded the first shuttle flight after Challenger explains his decision.
- By Richard Hauck
- Air & Space magazine, July 2003
(Page 3 of 3)
“Although we grieve deeply, as do the families of Apollo 1 and Challenger before us, the bold exploration of space must go on. Once the root cause of this tragedy is found and corrected, the legacy of Columbia must carry on—for the benefit of our children and yours.”
The authors of that statement are painfully aware that astronauts take risks. They also know the real rewards of participating in a great adventure, of advancing frontiers and serving one’s country in the company of extraordinary colleagues. Only by taking such risks is society rewarded with increased knowledge and a sense of forward motion. And that, in the end, is what makes the risk worthwhile.