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Biographical Data

NASA Photo: Jon McBride

Jon A. McBride (Captain, USN, Ret.)
NASA Astronaut (former)

PERSONAL DATA: Born August 14, 1943, in Charleston, West Virginia, but considers Beckley, West Virginia, to be his hometown. Four children (one deceased). Married to the former Sharon Lynne White of Nacogdoches, Texas. Recreational interests include flying, basketball, golf, softball, racquetball, gourmet cooking, numismatics, gardening, carpentry.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Woodrow High School, Beckley, West Virginia in 1960; attended West Virginia University 1960-1964; received a bachelor of science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School in 1971. Graduate work in Human Resource Management at Pepperdine University.

ORGANIZATIONS: Member of the Association of Naval Aviation; Veterans of Foreign Wars; the American Legion; and the Society of Experimental Test Pilots. Life member of Phi Delta Theta; the National Honor Society; the Golden Key National Honor Society. Member of the West Virginia University Engineering Visiting Committee (Chairman 1990-92) and member of the University System of West Virginia Board of Trustees (1992-1995); Co-Chairman (with wife), American Cancer Society fund-raising (State of West Virginia) 1990; Executive Committee, Boy Scouts of America; Spokesperson for March of Dimes; American Red Cross Disaster Relief; and Shawnee Hills Mental Health Group. Member of the Executive Committee, Association of Space Explorers (Co-President 1995-1996). President, Association of Space Explorers ( USA) (1997-1998).

SPECIAL HONORS: Awarded the Legion of Merit (LOM); the Defense Superior Service Medal (DSSM); 3 Air Medals; the Navy Commendation Medal with Combat V; a Navy Unit Commendation; the National Defense Medal; the Vietnamese Service Medal; and the NASA Space Flight Medal. Recipient of West Virginia Secretary of State's "State Medallion" and appointed "West Virginia Ambassador of Good Will Among All Men" (1980). Received Honorary Doctorate in Aerospace Engineering from Salem College (1984); Honorary Doctorate of Science from West Virginia University (1985); Honorary Doctorate of Science from University of Charleston (1987); Honorary Doctorate of Science from West Virginia Institute of Technology (1987); West Virginia Society's "Son-of-the-Year" (1988), City of Beckley; West Virginia "Hall of Fame"; Distinguished Alumni; West Virginia University (1988); West Virginia's "Honorary Italian-American" (1988); Kanawha County West Virginia's "Famous Person Award" (1988); West Virginia Broadcasters' "Man-of-the-Year" (1989); City of Hope's "Spirit of Life Award Winner" (1991); DAR "Medal of Honor" (1993).

EXPERIENCE: McBride's naval service began in 1965 with flight training at Pensacola, Florida. After winning his wings as a naval aviator, he was assigned to Fighter Squadron 101 based at Naval Air Station Oceana, Virginia, for training in the F-4 "Phantom II" aircraft. He was subsequently assigned to Fighter Squadron 41 where he served 3 years as a fighter pilot and division officer. He has also served tours with Fighter Squadrons 11 and 103. While deployed to Southeast Asia, McBride flew 64 combat missions.

He attended the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base prior to reporting to Air Test and Development Squadron Four at Point Mugu, California, where he served as maintenance officer and Sidewinder project officer. He has flown over 40 different types of military and civilian aircraft and piloted the Navy "Spirit of '76" bicentennial-painted F-4J "Phantom in various air shows during 1976, 1977, and 1978. He holds current FAA ratings which include commercial pilot (multi-engine), instrument, and glider; and he previously served as a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI).

He has logged more than 8,800 hours flying time--including 4,700 hours in jet aircraft. 1979.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in January 1978, McBride became an astronaut in August 1979. His NASA assignments have included lead chase pilot for the maiden voyage of Columbia; software verification in the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory (SAIL); capsule communicator (CAPCOM) for STS-5, STS-6, and STS-7; Flight Data File (FDF) Manager, and orbital rendezvous procedures development.

McBride was pilot of STS 41-G, which launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on October 5, 1984, aboard the Orbiter Challenger. This was the first crew of seven. During their eight day mission, crew members deployed the Earth Radiation Budget Satellite, conducted scientific observations of the earth with the OSTA-3 pallet and Large Format Camera, and demonstrated potential satellite refueling with an EVA and associated hydrazine transfer. Mission duration was 197 hours and concluded with a landing at Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on October 13, 1984.

McBride was scheduled to fly next in March 1986, as the commander of STS 61-E crew. This flight was one of several deferred by NASA in the wake of the Challenger accident in January 1986.

On July 30, 1987, McBride was assigned to NASA Headquarters to serve as Assistant Administrator for Congressional Relations, with responsibility for NASA's relationship with Congress, and for providing coordination and direction to all Headquarters and Field Center communications with Congressional support organizations. He held this post from September 1987 through March 1989. In 1988 McBride was named to command the crew of the STS-35 (ASTRO-1) mission, scheduled for launch in March 1990.

In May 1989, Captain McBride retired from NASA and the Navy, in order to pursue a business career. He is currently a member of the Kennedy Space Center Astronaut Encounter team, and does lecturing and corporate motivational presentations:

JUNE 2008

This is the only version available through NASA. Updates must be sought direct from the above named individual.