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Medical News & Perspectives
July 18, 2001

Physician-Astronauts Have Pioneered During Two Decades of Shuttle Flights

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JAMA. 2001;286(3):291-292. doi:10.1001/jama.286.3.291

When Bernard A. Harris, Jr, MD, was a child living in the Navajo nation in northern Arizona where his mother taught school, he would climb to a plateau, watch the sun go down, and wonder about the night sky.

"I tell young people the reason I'm here today as a physician and as an astronaut is because I had this one crazy little dream," said Harris, speaking at the National Rural Health Association annual meeting in May. "While looking at those stars, I would imagine myself in my very own spaceship cruising the solar system, leaving the galaxy and going into the universe."