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KFDM 6 :: News - Top Stories - Endeavour leaves Houston for new home
Thursday, September 20 2012, 12:04 PM CDT
Endeavour leaves Houston for new home

HOUSTON (AP) - The space shuttle Endeavour took off atop a modified transport plane from a Houston airport Thursday, beginning its journey to retirement in California, where it will be put on permanent display in a museum.


Along the way, the shuttle will pass low over several cities and places, including Tucson, Ariz., the home of the last person to command an Endeavor mission, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, and his wife, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.


The couple recently moved back to Tucson from Houston, where Giffords was recovering from serious injuries she suffered in a 2011 attack in which a gunman killed six people and wounded Giffords and 12 others.


Thursday's flyover, which Kelly requested, gives NASA a chance to honor Giffords' legacy as a longtime advocate for American human spaceflight, NASA spokeswoman Lisa Malone told The Associated Press in an email. She said no additional costs would be incurred by honoring Kelly's request.


Hundreds of people gathered Wednesday to watch the shuttle land in Houston for an overnight stay, an exciting but bittersweet moment for many residents who felt spurned that Space City wasn't chosen as the final home for one of the five retired shuttles.


"I think that it's the worst thing that they can do, rotten all the way," said 84-year-old Mary Weiss, clinging to her walker just before Endeavour landed after flying low over Gulf Coast towns, New Orleans and then downtown Houston and its airports.


Space City, partly made famous by Tom Hanks when he uttered the line "Houston, we have a problem" in the movie "Apollo 13," has long tied its fortune to a mix of oil and NASA. Astronauts train in the humid, mosquito-ridden city, and many call it home years after they retire. The Johnson Space Center and an adjacent museum hug Galveston Bay.


Houston's bid for a shuttle was rejected after the White House retired the fleet last summer to spend more time and money on reaching destinations, such as Mars and asteroids. Instead, Houston got a replica that used to be displayed at the Kennedy Space Center.


"The one we're getting is a toy. An important toy, but a toy nonetheless," said Scott Rush, 54, of Crystal Beach, Texas.


Still, people came out in droves Wednesday, waving American flags and toting space shuttle toys, cameras and cellphones.


Back-to-back delays in the ferry flight resulted in one day being cut from the Houston visit. After landing, the Endeavour rolled slowly in front of the cheering crowd. It circled and preened like a runway model, giving awed spectators an opportunity to take pictures from a variety of angles.


"I want to go on it," said 3-year-old Joshua Lee as he headed to the landing area with his mother and grandmother.


Joshua's mother, Jacqueline Lee of Houston, viewed the landing as an educational opportunity.


"I don't know if he'll get to see this again," Lee said.


The shuttle took off after sunrise Thursday, riding piggyback on a jumbo jet. It's booked to stop at Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso, Texas, before heading to NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center, Calif. After spending a night there, the shuttle will head to Los Angeles International Airport on Friday.


Along the way Thursday, the shuttle was scheduled to fly low over Houston, downtown Austin, which is the Texas capital, the White Sands Missile Range and NASA's White Sands Test Facility in New Mexico, and finally, Tucson.


In mid-October, Endeavour will be transported down city streets to the California Science Center, its permanent home.


NASA still plays a large role in Houston, and astronaut Clayton Anderson, who lived on the International Space Station from June to November 2007, encouraged people to focus on a new era of space exploration.


"The shuttles are a wonderful legacy, a huge part of Houston, but now it's time to look to the future," said Anderson, who lives in the Houston suburb of League City.


This is the last flight for a space shuttle. Atlantis will remain at Kennedy for display, and Discovery is already at the Smithsonian Institution, parked at a hangar in Virginia since April.


Endeavour - the replacement for the destroyed Challenger shuttle - made its debut in 1992 and flew 25 times before it was retired. It logged 123 million miles in space and circled Earth nearly 4,700 times.


___


RAMIT PLUSHNICK-MASTI


Associated Press


Ramit Plushnick-Masti can be followed on Twitter at https://twitter.com/RamitMastiAP


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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Texas House votes unanimously to trim sales tax

Texas asks Appeals Court to uphold Voter Id law

National Guard seeks to calm Baltimore

Jasper Sheriff releases top-ten-most-wanted list

Children survive close call when tree crashes into home

Texas teacher is National Teacher of the Year

Texas professor fails his entire class

Officers douse fires, assess damage following Baltimore rioting

Rioting prompts state of emergency in Baltimore

Daredevil to walk on top of 400-foot-high, spinning Ferris wheel

Power is restored to Jasper through Lake Rayburn Dam station

Services honor Judge Lupe Flores

P.A. woman sentenced to 40 years for murder of her husband

Families in southern Jasper County without power after strong winds

Child accidentally killed, community supports family

Stormy winds push train from Mississippi River bridge near New Orleans

Our sister station WBFF has in depth coverage of the Freddie Gray protests

Cock fighting ring busted in Southeast Texas

Jasper-Newton Electric Co-op restores power to 12,000

Extreme weather pummels North Texas

Occupants of vehicle rescued from Mill Creek waters

Entergy issues statement on power outages to 40,000 customers

Jasper-Newton Coop issues statement on major power outage

Caught On Video: Alligator bites trainer at Spring festival

Wind-whipped storms cause power outages, closures throughout SE Texas

School cancellation, delay update

Colmesneil ISD delays start of classes

Downed tree closed Highway 62 in Buna

Go Fund Me account set up for Saratoga child accidentally run over

Family and friends remember Judge Lupe Flores during a vigil

Jasper County Sheriff’s Office Top 10 Most Wanted

Early voting starts today (Monday)

Local student visits Haiti; helped Haitian children

Golfers play to support Beaumont police at 31st annual benefit tournament

Families in Hardin County pick up mess left behind after strong winds

Center in Crystal Beach opens as place for veterans to heal

Breaking News: Father accidently runs over his toddler

Possible medical emergency leads to fatal crash

Cooks Lake, Peck roads closed power lines down

Sterling family reacts to Crystal Boyett's sentencing

Murder conviction prompts sheriff and child advocates to speak up against child abuse

Fierce storm races across Jasper, Newton counties today

Breaking News: Jury decides on maximum 20 year sentence, $10,000 fine for Crystal Boyett

KFDM celebrates 60th anniversary

Louisiana troopers arrest Houston man with 11 kilos of cocaine

Flint Hills Resources Port Arthur contributes $10,000 to LSC-PA foundation

Beaumont police searching for attacker who may be targeting Hispanic victims

Comcast abandons Time Warner Cable bid after government pushback

Second company recalls ice cream products because of Listeria

Future energy prices? Houston meet talks oil, gas, prices, power

Vigil lets crime victims know they're not alone

More than dozen injured in high school musical stage collapse

High Crime Neighborhoods: Which neighborhoods in Beaumont have the most arrests, how to make neighborhoods safer

Jury finds Crystal Boyett guilty of manslaughter with a deadly weapon

Beaumont man arrested for shooting a weapon at Roberts Park

Friends, co-workers remember Judge Flores

AAA: Texas gas price average jumps 8 cents in week

CPSO Dive Team to be certified for underwater investigations

OPD: Police fire shots at SUV after man drives toward officer

Crystal Boyett trial concludes day two of testimony

Obama says American, Italian hostages killed in counterterrorism operation

Report-- alarm broken for 13 months at former president's house

Grand jury indicts Beaumont man for shooting and killing wife

Suspected hit and run driver arrested after hitting 4-year-old; driver returned to scene

Alter's Jewelers debut eco-friendly diamond on Earth Day

Higher property taxes raise concerns on the Bolivar Peninsula

Help raise awareness for Southeast Texas nature treasure

TREK recalls over a million bikes

Fair Housing conference tomorrow in Port Arthur

Firefighters reschedule 'Fill the Boot'

Teen sentenced to 40 years for 2013 murder

Trial underway of woman accused of causing daughter's death

Crystal Boyett trial-Day 1 of testimony

USPS considering drone-launching mail truck

Court upholds Bartholomew Granger capital murder conviction

CSPS arrest man for carnal knowledge of juvenile

Friends remember Judge Lupe Flores' life and legacy

Blue Bell pulls all its products off shelves

BPD says it places empty patrol cars around city to make roads safer

CrimeStoppers needs your help to solve murder

You can win tickets to CHRISTUS LiveWell Conference

Jefferson County Judge Lupe Flores dies at 65

Hadnot sentenced to 87 months for drug trafficking

Texas Senate advances school voucher plan

DA: Boyett was traveling 157 mph

Blue Bell issues voluntary recall

Justice is Served Dinner for CASA is tonight

Kraft changing recipe for mac-and-cheese

Jury picked in Boyett trial

Reaction to Texas House passing open carry bill

Five years since Deepwater Horizon oil spill

Bill could bring casino to Pleasure Island

Port Arthur kicks off Fill the Boot for MDA

Houston area man in Newton jail on drug charges

Jasper man with child in vehicle evades Troopers

Groves Police arrest man for burglary of Church

Jury selection in Crystal Boyett trial

SE Texas, SW Louisiana join forces for coastal restoration

BISD board sets executive session for forensic audit update

Jasper County S.O. Missing Teen is back home

Utah woman to be sentenced in deaths of her 6 newborns

Watch local hail storm video

Two month old baby killed by family's pit bull

Online petition to stop Millet Harrison from being released from Rusk State Hospital

Beaumont police investigating shooting at apartment complex on Helbig

Stabbing near PA port raises questions about the area's safety

PAPD: man stabbed four times Sunday

Proposed bill aims to reduce beach litter, create jobs and more

Scores of residents turnout for Relay for Life event

Divison over housing complex in China

Beaumont Police investigate major accident

Greg Bostwick updates us on the severe weather coming tonight

Study shows teen e-cigarette use triples

Recent rains cause problems for farmers, DD6: 'Green Pond Gulley' could help

Southeast Texas unemployment rate drops to 6.2; Texas at 4.2

Kelly community hold workday to help others

BBB's 'Shred It & Forget It' moves to front of Target Saturday

Firefighters in Vidor battle home fire

Woman robbed at Lake Charles casino

Neches River Festival parade canceled for Saturday

Small plane crashes near Diboll; pilot and passengers not seriously hurt

Corp to seek public input on Lake Rayburn master plan update

Lamar's Dyrhaug exhibits work at Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum

Authorities investigate aggravated robbery

Beaumont Police, NAACP and 100 Black Men of Greater Beaumont team up to recruit officers

Political season heating up even before election

Nederland's EDC moves to new location, hopes to bring new business to city

Cops and Kids Picnic postponed

Beaumont man found guilty of aggravated robbery

PN police arrest driver with large quantity of suspected synthetic marijuana

Red Cross new app: Everything you need to know in emergencies

US Marshals lead operation to target most-dangerous criminals

AAA: Texas gas price average edges up

Lake Charles man charged with vehicular homicide

Texas Senate approves decriminalizing truancy

Child snake bite victim experiencing complications

Beaumont Housing Authority loses $12.5 million in Hurricane Ike recovery funds

Family of murder victim believes someone in neighborhood has answers

Red Cross doesn't have enough volunteers

Former Railroad Commissioner Buddy Temple dies

Housing Authority says it's lost out on $12.5 million in Hurricane Ike recovery money

One hospitalized for minor burns in Port Arthur fire

Beaumont S.W.A.T. team trains Brazilian police officers

Boy recovering from snake bite

Beechnut recalls products

Beaumont man charged with intoxicated manslaughter in Houston

Man who fled police across 3 counties, jailed in La.

Third Brigade Combat Team practices in Beaumont for disaster

Small helicopter lands on Capitol lawn; pilot arrested

130 mph stolen car pursuit begins in LA, ends in Newton County

Tom Wright previews PALT's 'On Golden Pond'

Driver shot dead after Houston police chase

Beaumont man killed in traffic accident in Silsbee

Houston woman gives birth to all girl quintuplets

Red Cross needs volunteers in Southeast Texas

CPSO arrests Sulphur man for stalking and unauthorized entry

Walmart closes several stores over plumbing issues

Pair charged with burglary, including stealing child's doll

Beaumont City Council approves incentives for hotel and water park

Reaction to boy bitten by copperhead snake

Parents say new superintendent has experience they'd hoped for

PAPD: New reports of Pigeon Drop scheme, how you can protect your money

Crime Stoppers needs your help to solve murder of Carlton Frank

Coming up at 10 on KFDM

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Business News

US economy shrank at 0.7 percent rate in first quarter

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. economy went into reverse in the first three months of this year as a severe winter and a widening trade deficit took a harsher toll than initially estimated.

Consumer News

   WEST PALM BEACH, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/21/14 --
 Companies that pride themselves on being eco-friendly may have conflicted
 ideas between marketing with ad specialties and maintaining their green
 reputation. ...

Entertainment News

DWAYNE JOHNSON-`SAN ANDREAS'

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Is The Rock stronger than an earthquake?

Get This

'BACHELOR' BREAKUP

NEW YORK (AP) -- He's going to stay a "Bachelor" -- at least for now.

Science/Tech News

IN THE NEWS: TRENDING ON TWITTER AT POTUS

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Give people a chance to pop a question to POTUS, and they'll take the invitation and run with it.


 

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