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Sally Ride First American Woman in Space

Sally Ride was the first American woman in space; she would have been 64 years old 05/26/2015.

Sally Kristen Ride was the first American woman in space; she would have been 64 years old 05/26/2015. She died from pancreatic cancer in 2012. She was born in Los Angeles, California May 26, 1951.  

While she was completing her Ph.D. in physics at Stanford University in 1977, she decided to apply to NASA.  Six years later, on June 18, 1983 she joined the Challenger Space Shuttle crew and became the first American woman to fly in space. 

Sally Ride beat 8,000 applicants to become the first American woman in space. Ride remains the youngest American astronaut to have traveled to space, having done so at the age of 32.

She was one of just 35 women who made it into the first class of astronauts for the Space Shuttle program, embarking on six years of grueling astronaut training.

NASA had to adjust the idea of women in space. NASA had to add a locker room for the new class of female scientists, as well as update what went into the Challenger Space Shuttle. When growing up, Ride was a very good at tennis. In 1969, She ranked 18th in the country. She had a woman partner, Tam O'Shaughnessy. They were together for 30 years, but the world didn't know about them.

She was offered the position to be NASA's head administrator by President Bill Clinton; she turned down the offer twice. She appeared in the TV show, "Touched by an Angel," as herself.

She went on two space missions, both on board the Challenger Space Shuttle. The first was in 1983 and then again in 1984. She left NASA in 1987; she spent more than 343 hours in space. 

O'Shaughnessy posted on Google Blog, stating: "Sally died almost three years ago on July 23, 2012, from pancreatic cancer. But I know she would be honored by today’s Google Doodle. With whimsy, it expresses Sally’s sense of fun and adventure, and her ability to inspire young people. And who knows—maybe her Doodle will motivate some girl or boy somewhere in the world to become a scientist and adventurer just like Sally."


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