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  #1  
Old 02-17-2004, 01:35 AM
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NutBrnHair NutBrnHair is offline
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Cool Owls in Space!

Chi Omega alumna, Susan Helms is an astronaut! She is a Special Initiate of Pi Gamma Chapter (Univ. of New Mexico). You might have seen her in the IMAX movie, Space Station, narrated by Tom Cruise. Here's Susan's bio:


NAME: Susan J. Helms (Colonel, USAF)
NASA Astronaut

PERSONAL DATA: Born February 26, 1958, in Charlotte, North Carolina, but considers Portland, Oregon, to be her hometown. She enjoys piano and other musical activities, jogging, traveling, reading, computers, and cooking. Plays keyboard for MAX-Q, a rock-n-roll band. Her parents, Lt. Col. (Ret., USAF) Pat and Dori Helms, reside in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Parkrose Senior High School, Portland, Oregon, in 1976; received a bachelor of science degree in aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1980, and a master of science degree in aeronautics/astronautics from Stanford University in 1985.

ORGANIZATIONS: Women Military Aviators; U.S. Air Force Academy Association of Graduates; Stanford Alumni Association; Association of Space Explorers, Sea/Space Symposium, Chi Omega Alumnae.

SPECIAL HONORS: Recipient of the Distinguished Superior Service Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal, NASA Space Flight Medals, and the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal. Named a Distinguished Graduate of the USAF Test Pilot School, and recipient of the R.L. Jones Award for Outstanding Flight Test Engineer, Class 88A. In 1990, she received the Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment Commanding Officer's Commendation, a special award unique to the Canadian Forces. Named the Air Force Armament Laboratory Junior Engineer of the Year in 1983.

EXPERIENCE: Helms graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1980. She received her commission and was assigned to Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, as an F-16 weapons separation engineer with the Air Force Armament Laboratory. In 1982, she became the lead engineer for F-15 weapons separation. In 1984, she was selected to attend graduate school. She received her degree from Stanford University in 1985 and was assigned as an assistant professor of aeronautics at the U.S. Air Force Academy. In 1987, she attended the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, California. After completing one year of training as a flight test engineer, Helms was assigned as a USAF Exchange Officer to the Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment, Canadian Forces Base, Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, where she worked as a flight test engineer and project officer on the CF-18 aircraft. She was managing the development of a CF-18 Flight Control System Simulation for the Canadian Forces when selected for the astronaut program.

As a flight test engineer, Helms has flown in 30 different types of U.S. and Canadian military aircraft.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Selected by NASA in January 1990, Helms became an astronaut in July 1991. A veteran of four space flights, Helms has logged over 1,096 hours in space. She flew on STS-54 in 1993, STS-64 in 1994, STS-78 in 1996, and most recently on STS-101.

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Old 02-17-2004, 02:14 PM
CardinalSM CardinalSM is offline
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Hey, I share my birthday with her

That is really awesome! How cool is it to have a Chi O in space?!
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Old 02-17-2004, 06:05 PM
Hootie Hootie is offline
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Maybe one of OUR badges will end up in space
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:01 PM
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Chi Omega Items to Space & Back!

Quote:
Originally posted by Hootie
Maybe one of OUR badges will end up in space
Yeah! Susan did take several Chi Omega items with her and when she was living on the International Space Station (the first woman to do so) the members of Pi Gamma Chapter (Univ. of New Mexico) signed a Chi Omega flag to send to her on one of the missions that re-supplies the astronauts.

Susan, and fellow astronaut Jim Voss (not a Chi Omega ) now share the record for the longest space walk. They completed almost 9 uninterrupted hours of maintenance before moving back inside the Space Station.
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:45 PM
OtterXO OtterXO is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by Hootie
Maybe one of OUR badges will end up in space
Well apparently we our the only chapter without one!
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Old 02-18-2004, 12:21 AM
XOAlumXO XOAlumXO is offline
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Thanks for the news, NutBrwn!!
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Old 02-18-2004, 02:35 AM
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Susan's Comments About Space

I have to add this...Susan said:

"Ladies, I'm here to tell you that gravity is not our friend," she said. She loved feeling weightless in space. And there were additional benefits. Her spine grew 2 inches ("I know because I measured it") and her body fluids shifted upward. This had the wonderful effect, she said, of not only taking inches off her waist but of smoothing out facial wrinkles. (Clearly, this was no male astronaut speaking.) Unfortunately, she said, these benefits did not survive re-entry into the earth's atmosphere.







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Last edited by NutBrnHair; 02-18-2004 at 03:32 AM.
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Old 02-18-2004, 03:31 AM
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I Finally Found This Documented

Quote:
Originally posted by Hootie
Maybe one of OUR badges will end up in space
"Her Chi Omega badge, which she wore into space, is now on permanent display in the Pi Gamma Chapter house."




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Old 02-18-2004, 09:11 AM
xok85xo xok85xo is offline
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Susan was initiated while I was still a pledge - so while I was a member of the chapter at the time, I was not present at her initiation.

She did in fact take her badge with her into space. She later had the badge mounted/framed with pictures of her/pics from space, etc. it was a really nice display. unfortuantely, it has since been stolen during what is presumably a "prank"
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