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Laurel Clark

Laurel Blair Salton Clark (March 10, 1961 - February 1, 2003) was an astronaut and space shuttle mission specialist of STS-107 (Columbia) who was killed when the craft disintegrated after re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere. Clark, of Racine, Wisconsin became an astronaut in 1996.

Laurel's final message to her friends and family was through an email sent from Space Shuttle Columbia.

Navy career

In the US Navy, Clark had served as a submarine medical officer and, later, as a flight surgeon.


Clark described the Columbia's launch delays as a marathon in which the finish line kept moving out another 5 miles:

  • "You've got to slow back down and maintain a pace."

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