December 2, 2012
No one thing sparked my interest, it was a combination of things over time. Seeing Sputnik pass overhead one night, seeing a naked eye Andromeda galaxy one very dark night at the lake, the manned space missions of the late 60's and 70's, and having to memorize 50 star names and locations while in Nav school in the Air Force all sparked my passion for space.
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Funding is critical. The more we have, the more effective we can be, translating into more missions, more science, and more exploration.