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May 3, 2011
RELEASE JA11-005
Houston's Only Native NASA Astronaut to Visit City Hall

HOUSTON – After living aboard the International Space Station for six months, Houston's first born and raised astronaut will return two flown mementos to officials at Houston's City Hall.

At 2 p.m. Tuesday, May 10, NASA astronaut Shannon Walker will stop by the open session of the city council hearing to present Mayor Annise Parker and 14 council members with a City of Houston flag she carried with her in space. The brief ceremony also will include the return of a key she flew for the Mayor's Youth Council. The meeting will take place in the council chamber of Houston City Hall, 901 Bagby, Houston.

Walker is a 1983 graduate of Westbury Senior High in Houston. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree in physics and a Master of Science and a doctorate in space physics from Rice University in 1987, 1992 and 1993, respectively.

Selected by NASA in 2004, Walker completed astronaut candidate training in February 2006. In 2007, following assignments in various capacities within the Astronaut Office, Walker began training for a long-duration flight on the International Space Station.

On June 15, 2010, Walker and her Expedition 24 crewmates, cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin and NASA astronaut Doug Wheelock, launched on a Russian Soyuz spacecraft for a long-duration mission aboard the orbiting laboratory. As a flight engineer, Walker helped support more than 120 microgravity experiments. The mission ended 163 days later with the Soyuz landing in Kazakhstan on Nov. 25, 2010.

For more about Walker and expeditions to the International Space Station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station

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Brenda Cabaniss
Johnson Space Center, Houston
281-244-8860

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