Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Mark Kelly to retire from NASA

Astronaut Mark Kelly announced today that he is retiring from NASA effective Oct. 1.

In a message posted on Facebook, Kelly also said he would be retiring from the Navy.

Kelly's 15-year NASA career includes four trips aboard a shuttle to the International Space Station.

Most recently he was the commander for Endeavour's final flight last month.

Kelly made the difficult decision to stick with the flight while his wife, Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, continued her recovery from a gunshot wound to the head in a January assassination attempt.

"As life takes unexpected turns we frequently come to a crossroads," Kelly wrote in his Facebook message. "I am at this point today. Gabrielle is working hard every day on her mission of recovery. I want to be by her side. Stepping aside from my work in the Navy and at NASA will allow me to be with her and with my two daughters."

He goes on to say he hopes return to public service again.

"After some time off, I will look at new opportunities and am hopeful that one day I will again serve our country," Kelly writes.

His identical twin brother, Scott, also is an astronaut.


Glynis said...

This is a man who deserves our admiration!

topwrench said...

Mark Kelly for president 2016!!!

Mark Lopa said...

Why not retire? What else is there to do for him at NASA?