Left to Right:
- Mission Specialist: David M. Brown, a U.S. Navy captain trained as an aviator and flight surgeon. Brown worked on a number of scientific experiments.
- Commander: Rick D. Husband, a U.S. Air Force colonel and mechanical engineer, who piloted a previous shuttle during the first docking with the International Space Station (STS-96).
- Mission Specialist: Laurel Blair Salton Clark, a U.S. Navy captain and flight surgeon. Clark worked on a number of biological experiments.
- Mission Specialist: Kalpana Chawla, an Indian-born aerospace engineer who was on her second space mission.
- Payload Commander: Michael P. Anderson, a U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel and physicist who was in charge of the science mission.
- Pilot: William C. McCool, a U.S. Navy commander
- Payload Specialist: Ilan Ramon, a colonel in the Israeli Air Force and the first Israeli astronaut.
A story here claims that they knew the shuttle was unsalvagable and that reentry was impossible--but that so was rescue.
What to do? Suffocation or a hell-bent-for-leather reentry?
We all know the possible price one pays "to wear the Star Fleet uniform." And all those who took that flight knew the risk.
God love and rest them.