Temple City Grad Ready for Fifth Mission

You know that guy at the high school class reunion who has all the best stories?

They knew he'd go far, but a 1978 grad of Temple City High probably exceeded expectations with four shuttle missions into space.

Steve Lindsey is the commander of the space shuttle Discovery on its final  mission, which will be Lindsey's fifth. The shuttle was set to lift off Friday from the Kennedy Space Center in  Florida, but NASA called off Friday's launch because of a fuel leak.

Lindsey, who was born in Arcadia, became an astronaut in 1996 and has flown on four previous  shuttle missions.

The 50-year-old Lindsey received a bachelor's degree in engineering  sciences from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1982 and a master's degree in  aeronautical engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology in 1990.

Lindsey was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Air Force in 1982  and has logged more than 6,500 hours of flying time in more than 50 different  types of aircraft. He retired from the Air Force in 2006 as a colonel.

Hydrogen gas began leaking Friday morning, midway through the fueling process. NASA said it's the same type of problem that delayed two shuttle missions last year. It's considered a serious problem because of the flammability of hydrogen gas.

The next launch will be no earlier than Sunday, but it's possible the flight might be off until December.

Discovery will take two key components to the International Space  Station -- the Permanent Multipurpose Module and Express Logistics Carrier 4 --  that will provide spare parts and storage capacity to the space station.

On its scheduled 11-day mission, Discovery will also deliver Robonaut 2,  which will become the first humanoid robot in space.

The mission is the 39th for Discovery, NASA's most flown shuttle.

The shuttle program will have one more mission after this one --  Endeavour is scheduled to begin a 14-day mission Feb. 27. 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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