HOUSTON, March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Former NASA astronaut John "Mike" Lounge, 64, died Tuesday morning.
"All of us at the Johnson Space Center are deeply saddened by the passing of former astronaut Mike Lounge," said Michael Coats, Director, Johnson Space Center. "I personally had the pleasure of working with Mike in one capacity or another for more than 30 years. He had an unwavering love of country and dedication to our nation's space program, as evidenced by a sterling career as a naval aviator and astronaut, and veteran of three space shuttle missions. His many friends at Johnson are thinking of Mike's family during this difficult time."
Lounge's service to NASA began at Johnson in July 1978, when he worked as lead engineer for space shuttle launched satellites, and as a member of the Skylab re-entry flight control team.
Lounge, a Navy veteran, went on to join the astronaut corps in 1980 and after his initial training, served as a member of the launch support team at NASA's Kennedy Space Center for the STS-1, STS-2 and STS-3 missions.
Lounge was a veteran of three space flights, logging more than 20 days in space. He flew on STS-51I in 1985, STS-26, the first shuttle flight after the Challenger accident, in September 1988 and STS-35 in December 1990.
He went on to serve as the chief of the Space Station Support Office, representing astronaut interests in space station design and operation planning until his retirement from NASA in 1991.
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