Academy of Achievement Logo
Achiever Gallery
  The Arts
  Public Service
 + Science & Exploration
  My Role Model
  Recommended Books
  Academy Careers
Keys to Success
Achievement Podcasts
About the Academy
For Teachers

Search the site

Academy Careers


If you like Story Musgrave's story, you might also like:
Daniel Goldin,
Paul MacCready,
John Mather,
Sally Ride,
Alan Shepard,
Donna Shirley
and Chuck Yeager

Story Musgrave's
recommended reading: Leaves of Grass

Story Musgrave also appears in the videos:
Frontiers of Exploration: From the Cell to the Solar System

Mystery of the Cosmos: Life's Place in the Universe

Teachers can find prepared lesson plans featuring Story Musgrave in the Achievement Curriculum section:
Poets & Poetry
The Cosmos

Related Links:
Space Center Houston

Share This Page
  (Maximum 150 characters, 150 left)

Story Musgrave
Story Musgrave
Profile of Story Musgrave Biography of Story Musgrave Interview with Story Musgrave Story Musgrave Photo Gallery

Story Musgrave Biography

Dean of American Astronauts

Story Musgrave Date of birth: August 19, 1935

Print Story Musgrave Biography Print Biography

  Story Musgrave
Story Musgrave Biography Photo

Franklin Story Musgrave was born in Boston and raised on his parents' farm near Stockbridge, Massachusetts. By his own account, his early home life was violent and chaotic, but he found solace in nature and learned habits of self-sufficiency at an early age. As a small child, he wandered alone in the neighboring woods, and by his teens he was operating and repairing tractors, trucks and combines.

At 18, Story Musgrave joined the United States Marine Corps. In the Corps, he served as an aircraft electrician and mechanic, and learned to fly. After completing this service, he enrolled at Syracuse University where, in 1958, he received a bachelor of science degree in mathematics and statistics. Upon graduation from Syracuse, he went to work for the Eastman Kodak Company as a mathematician and operations analyst.

In the years that followed, he earned an MBA in operations analysis and computer programming from UCLA. The following year he added a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Marietta College and, in 1964, received his Doctor of Medicine degree from Columbia University. Leaving Kodak, he served a surgical internship at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington. He remained at Kentucky on post-doctoral fellowships from the Air Force and the Heart Institute, earning an additional master's degree in physiology and biophysics. High-altitude flight and the then-new space program had created new areas of medicine, and Dr. Musgrave was in the forefront, pursuing research in cardiovascular and exercise physiology and in the medicine of aviation.

Story Musgrave Biography Photo
In August 1967, Musgrave was selected by NASA to be among the first cohort of astronaut-scientists. Until then, astronauts had been chosen from the ranks of military test pilots. After completing astronaut training, he worked on the design and development of the Skylab program and served as backup science pilot for the first Skylab mission. Dr. Musgrave helped design the spacesuits, life support systems, airlocks and manned maneuvering units that would be used for space walks and other extravehicular activity on the Space Shuttle missions.

From 1967 to 1989, while working for NASA, Musgrave served as a trauma surgeon at Denver General Hospital, and as a part-time professor of physiology at and biophysics at the University of Kentucky Medical Center. He also trained as a pilot and parachutists, earning his Air Force Wings and FAA ratings as flight instructor, instrument instructor, glider instructor, and airline transport pilot. He has flown 160 different types of civilian and military aircraft, and has made more than 800 free falls, including 100 experimental free-falls designed to study human aerodynamics.

Story Musgrave Biography Photo
The first of Dr. Musgrave's six trips into outer space took place on the maiden voyage of the Space Shuttle Challenger in 1983. While on this mission, Musgrave and Don Peterson performed the first space walks off of the Shuttle. On his second Shuttle mission, he served as systems engineer during launch and reentry, and as a pilot during the orbital operations.

Perhaps the most dramatic of Story Musgrave's space mission was the fifth, on the Shuttle Endeavour. Musgrave commanded the mission to repair the damaged Hubble Space Telescope. During this 11-day mission, the Telescope was restored to full functionality. The repairs required five spacewalks, three performed by Dr. Musgrave himself.

Story Musgrave flew his last space mission in January, 1996, on the Space Shuttle Columbia. On this mission, the crew deployed and retrieved reusable satellites for studying the origin and composition of the stars, and to experiment with super-vacuum conditions in which thin film wafers can be grown for use in the semiconductor industry.

A lifelong student, he has earned seven graduate degrees in all, including master's degrees in literature and psychology. His interests include poetry, chess, gardening, photography, computer, running, scuba diving, flying and soaring in gliders. Today, he conducts multiple enterprises, including a palm farm in Orlando, Florida, a production company in Sydney, Australia, and a sculpture company in Burbank, California. In addition to his business activities, he practices landscape architecture and serves as a consultant with Walt Disney Imagineering and teaches at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California.

Watch Story Musgrave depart earth and spacewalk to fix the
Hubble telescope and return safely to the Endeavour Shuttle in 1993.
See planet earth like an astronaut in space.

This page last revised on Feb 27, 2015 03:37 EDT
How To Cite This Page