NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson, currently living and working aboard the International Space Station, broke the record Monday for cumulative time spent in space by a U.S. astronaut – she broke Jeff Williams’ U.S. record of 534 cumulative days in space. The occasion was celebrated with a phone call from President Donald Trump, First Daughter Ivanka Trump, and fellow astronaut Kate Rubins. NASA astronaut Jack Fischer, who arrived April 20 for his first mission aboard the orbiting outpost, also participated in the call alongside Whitson.
Peggy Annette Whitson is an American biochemistry researcher, NASA astronaut, and former NASA Chief Astronaut. Her first space mission was in 2002, with an extended stay aboard the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 5. Her second mission launched October 10, 2007, as the first woman commander of the ISS with Expedition 16. She is currently in space on her third long-duration space flight, and she launched on Nov. 17, 2016, with 377 days in space already under her belt. On April 9th 2017, she became the first woman to command the ISS twice. In addition, she holds the record for most spacewalks by a female astronaut.
“Peggy is a phenomenal role model for young women, and all Americans, who are exploring or participating in STEM education programs and careers,” said President Trump. “As I have said many times before, only by enlisting the full potential of women in our society will we be truly able to make America great again. When I signed the INSPIRE Women Act in February, I did so to ensure more women have access to STEM education and careers, and to ensure America continues to benefit from the contributions of trailblazers like Peggy.”
We really do hope that one day, the dream of space travel would not seem so unreachable for Nigerians. We hope that one day, Nigerian women will be given the opportunity to achieve the feats that Peggy Whitson has achieved.
Source: Nasa and Wikepedia