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Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center
Houston, Texas 77058

Biographical Data

Gary Payton (NASA Photo S84-44373)

Gary E. Payton (Major, USAF)
Payload Specialist

PERSONAL DATA: Born June 20, 1948, in Rock Island, Illinois. Married. One child.

EDUCATION: Graduated from high school in Rock Island, Illinois, in 1966; attended Bradley University, Peoria, Illinois; and after one year entered the USAF Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado. Received a bachelor of science degree in astronautical engineering, USAF Academy, 1971; and a master of science degree in astronautical and aeronautical engineering, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana, 1972. Graduated from pilot training at Craig Air Force Base, Alabama, in 1973, and became an instructor pilot there.

EXPERIENCE: 1976 to May 1980, Cape Canaveral AFS, Florida. Spacecraft test controller.

May 1980 to present, Los Angeles AFS, California. Selected for the USAF Manned Space Flight Engineer Program in February 1980.

He has accumulated 1,080 hours in T-37, T-38 and T-39 aircraft.

SPACE FLIGHT EXPERIENCE: Payton flew on STS-51C Discovery (January 24-27, 1985) which launched from and returned to land at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida. STS-51C was the first dedicated Space Shuttle Department of Defense mission. At the conclusion of the mission, Payton had traveled over 1.2 million miles in 48 Earth orbits, and logged more than 73 hours in space.


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