Discovery and Motivation

What REALLY gives you motivation? What revs you up and makes you want to push further?

I recently realized that being a space geek has done a lot to motivate me . I REALLY wanted to be a pilot and astronaut as a kid (hey I WAS born the year Neal Armstrong walked on the moon!). Model Rockets, Civil Air Patrol, and planes were my life from age 10 on through Junior High. At 15, I had the incredible good fortune of sitting ON Kennedy Space Center looking at launch pad 39A with dad’s binoculars as the countdown for STS-51G hit 1 and the earth shook. My friends, if you have not experienced a Shuttle Launch from that close, I cannot explain it in words, my very inner space geek being, wanted needed to do that! As I watched Discovery head to orbit, I had to be an astronaut.


Shuttle Discovery liftoff June 1985 . Camera: Kodak 110 pocket, Photographer:  My Mom!

As with most people,  life got in the way, I lost interest in “space” somewhere along the line, then came University, Career, Marriage and kids. In hindsight though, that pivotal experience in June of 85 did motivate me to improve my academics, which in turn led to where I am today. While I have not and likely will never get to space, I have achieved much due to that inspiration as a 15 year old.

Now it’s 30 years later (Gawd I feel old) and I have a 9-year-old that is very math and science gifted . She has developed an interest in space, computers, and robotics (watching both Gravity and The Martian with rapt attention). Thus my dormant space geek has re-emerged, hoping to help motivate and inspire her to go for whatever path she decides to take (although admittedly it would be cool to see our family line go from the coal mines of Eastern Kentucky to the Moon or Mars in three generations).

Now our father/daughter time involves SpaceX launch feeds, Arduino robots, and doughnut runs, and if all goes well, I intend to be once again at Kennedy in 2018. That’s when the first Orion manned mission is scheduled to launch, she will be 13 or so then, but this time I’m not sure who will motivate and inspire me more, the Orion Crew or the red-haired girl who survived cancer, looking though dad’s binoculars while the earth shakes.

What Inspires YOU? Share it with us!

A Nine-Year-Old’s favorite Music Video

About Russ

Husband, Father, Freemason, and Entreprenuer who happens to be a lover of Coffee, Cigar’s, Scotch, and Live Music, who wishes he were sitting off Okracoke island, under a black flag , java brew in hand and the wind at his back.

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