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Biographical Data

Sherwood Spring (NASA Photo)

Sherwood C. (Woody) Spring (Colonel, USA, Ret.)
NASA Astronaut (former)

PERSONAL DATA: Born September 3, 1944, in Hartford, Connecticut, but considers Harmony, Rhode Island, to be his hometown. Married, two children. He enjoys flying, scuba diving, river running, skiing, and carpentry.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Ponaganset high School, Chepachet, Rhode Island, in 1963; received a bachelor of science degree in General Engineering from the United States Military Academy in 1967 and a master of science degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Arizona in 1974. Graduated from the U.S. Navy Test Pilot School in 1976.

ORGANIZATIONS: Member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and the United States Army Association; and lifetime member of the Association of Graduates of the United States Military Academy.

SPECIAL HONORS: Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Flying Cross, 2 Army Bronze Stars, 1 Army Meritorious Service Medal, 3 Army Commendations, 9 Army Air Medals, a Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medals, and NASA Space Flight Medal. Recipient, in 1986, of two honorary doctorate degrees; Doctor of Science, and Doctor of Human Letters.

EXPERIENCE: After graduation from West Point in 1967, Spring served two tours of duty in Vietnam. The first was from 1968 to 1969 with the 101st Airborne Division. The second tour, 1970-1971, came immediately after flight school and was served as a helicopter pilot with the 1st Cavalry Division. Upon return, he received fixed wing training enroute to a master's degree program with the University of Arizona in 1974. After a short tour at Edwards Air Force Base, California, as a flight test engineer, he attended the Navy Test Pilot School at Patuxent River, Maryland. He then returned to the Army's Flight Test Facility at Edwards AFB to complete 4 years as an experimental test pilot.

He has military and civilian experience in 25 types of airplanes and helicopters and has logged more than 3,500 hours flying time--including over 1,500 hours in jet aircraft.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Spring was selected as an astronaut in May 1980. His technical assignments have included software verification at the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory and Flight Simulation Laboratory; vehicle and satellite integration at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, for STS-5, 6, 7, 8, and 9; Astronaut Office EVA (Extra Vehicular Activity) expert; and Space Station construction, EVA maintenance, and design. Spring served as a mission specialist on STS-61B which flew November 26 thru December 3, 1985. During that mission he was responsible for launching three communications satellites and performed two EVA's. The EVA's, which totaled more than 12 hours, investigated Space Station construction techniques, large structure manipulation while on the end of the remote arm, and a time and motion study for comparison between Earth training and Space performance. With the completion of STS-61B he has logged a total of 165 hours in space, including over 12 hours of EVA.

Following his retirement form NASA in August 1988, Colonel Spring spent the next five years directing the Army Space Program Office in Washington, D.C. He retired from the Army in July, 1994, and is now an Aerospace Consultant with TASC (The Application Science Corporation), Inc. of Reston Virginia.


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