Zee Media Bureau\Philaso G Kaping
Washington: NASA paid homage to the men and women who lost their lives while furthering the cause of space exploration and discovery.
The US space agency`s Day of Remembrance on January 31 marks the anniversaries of three spaceflight disasters and pays tribute to the legacy of the Apollo 1 crew (January 27, 1967), the STS-51L Challenger crew (January 28, 1986) and the STS-107 Columbia crew (February 1, 2003). It also remembers all the NASA employees who died in training accidents, car crashes, maintenance accidents and the helicopter crew who perished while engaged in the Columbia debris recovery effort.
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and a host of dignitaries participated in a wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery Friday morning.
“These men and women were our friends, family and colleagues, and we will never forget their lives and passion to push us farther and achieve more,” said Bolden. “They have our everlasting love, respect and gratitude.”
US President Barack Obama also paid tribute to the fallen space heroes.
"On this Day of Remembrance, we join the American people in honouring the men and women of NASA who have given their lives in our nation’s space program," said Obama. "Our exploration of space has expanded our knowledge of the universe, improved our lives here on Earth and been a source of inspiration and pride for generations of Americans."