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NASA astronaut Ron Garan marks 10-year anniversary of last spacewalk of the space shuttle era

A decade ago, NASA Astronauts Ron Garan and Mike Fossum, conducted the sole spacewalk of the STS-135 mission. That mission was the last flight of Space Shuttle Atlantis and the last flight of the Space Shuttle Program.

The official astronaut portrait of Ron J. Garan

The spacewalk was a significant event as it signified not only the closing of one chapter of our nation’s space program but also the opening of a new chapter that will see astronauts leave low Earth orbit (LEO) to explore the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

In a televised speech from the International Space Station commemorating the last flight of a space shuttle, Ron Garan shared these words: “Behind us right now is the hatch that leads to Atlantis. Thirty-five space shuttles have docked to the mating adapter that is just beyond that hatch. During the course of the International Space Station construction, all those space shuttles left behind the legacy of this incredible orbiting research facility that not only is a stepping stone toward the exploration of the rest of the solar system, but it’s also improving life on our planet. … When we close the hatch, we will close a chapter in the history of our nation. But in the future, when another spacecraft with crew members on board docks to that hatch and when we open that hatch, we will open a new chapter and raise the flag on a new era of space exploration beyond low Earth orbit.”

In the Livestream event, Ron will:

  • Share a firsthand account and answer all your questions about the significance of that last spacewalk.

  • Look back at how far we've come and share hope for what lies ahead.

  • Discuss how space exploration can improve life on earth.

During the Livestream, Ron will also mark the launch of his latest book Floating In Darkness: A Journey of Evolution which will be published the same day.

Floating in Darkness is the true story of the life journey of a combat fighter pilot and astronaut. An adventure that illuminates a path toward understanding the meaning of life and our place in the universe.

Humanity faces an unprecedented crisis that threatens all life on Earth. Desert Storm fighter pilot and NASA astronaut Ron Garan addresses this head-on in Floating in Darkness: A Journey of Evolution, the follow-up to his critically acclaimed first book, The Orbital Perspective: Lessons in Seeing the Big Picture from a Journey of 71 Million Miles.

Ron takes us on an extraordinary journey through outer space and inner space. He explores the dancing, intersecting orbits of religion, spirituality, and science while grappling with his own role in the violence of combat and the effects of war on all aspects of human life. We witness Ron struggling with mortality while also basking in the sheer wonder and beauty of our world and beyond.

From this perspective, Ron maps out a viable path forward--to solve our crisis, we need a giant leap in humanity's evolutionary process. We must transcend individual and collective ego and embrace the true nature of our interdependence with this fragile planet and all life within its biosphere. Ron shows us how to discover our purpose, detoxify our divisive culture, and become a 'white blood cell' in a growing immune response to heal our world.

Floating in Darkness is a blueprint to build a restorative and positive future for all.


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