As Atlantis Lands, Adams Recognizes the Ending of an Era

Press Release From: Rep. Sandy Adams
Posted: Thursday, July 21, 2011

Washington, D.C. - Representative Sandy Adams (FL-24) released the following statement after Space Shuttle Atlantis completed its 33rd mission and landed safely to its home, the Kennedy Space Center. Atlantis' landing marks the end of NASA's 30-year Space Shuttle Program and the conclusion of its135th mission, an ending of an era that has so greatly defined Florida's Space Coast.

"It is with great sadness and pride that I watched Space Shuttle Atlantis land today, marking the end of an era that has so greatly defined Florida's Space Coast for 30 years. Since the very first launch of Space Shuttle Columbia to today's final mission, the Space Coast and the hard working men and women of Florida have been there all along making history. Children along the Space Coast have grown up watching shuttle launches from their porches and beachfronts with a sense of pride and awe. NASA's 30-year Space Shuttle Program has been more than just space exploration to Florida families, it's part of their history, it's their livelihoods, and it's been a source of inspiration for the tens of thousands of people who have supported its operations and have made their homes in our great state.

"As we close the door to this chapter in Florida and in the nation's history, we must look forward to the future of our Space Coast and the future of space exploration. I was elated when NASA selected Florida's Center for the Advancement of Science in Space Inc., to develop and manage the non-NASA scientific research on the U.S. portion of the International Space Station. This $15 million annual investment will help create much needed jobs here on the Space Coast. I am hopeful that as we move forward as a nation, Congress and this Administration will continue to properly prioritize NASA funding and find ways to utilize the existing infrastructure, the skill set, and a workforce who have played such a vital role in defining America as the leader in space exploration.

"Moving forward, we must not lose sight of America's contributions to space, and we must continue fighting to keep our great nation the leader in space exploration. I welcome home Atlantis and I am so proud of the hard working men and women in Florida who have helped define our shuttle program as an American flagship and a symbol of strength for the country we love."

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