Posted Jul 23, 2012By
Sally Kristen Ride was an American physicist and astronaut. Ride joined NASA in 1978, and in 1983 became the first American woman—and then-youngest American, at 32—to enter space. In 1987 she left NASA to work at Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Arms Control. She died of pancreatic cancer on July 23, 2012.
Ride was one of 8,000 people to answer an advertisement in a newspaper seeking applicants for the space program. As a result, she joined NASA in 1978. During her career, Ride served as the ground-based Capsule Communicator (CapCom) for the second and third Space Shuttle flights (STS-2 and STS-3) and helped develop the Space Shuttle’s robot arm. On June 18, 1983, she became the first American woman in space as a crew member on Space Shuttle Challenger for STS-7.
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