Gary Payton (astronaut)
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Gary E. Payton
|Born||June 20, 1948|
Rock Island, Illinois, U.S.
|Other names||Gary Eugene Payton|
|Alma mater||Bradley University|
USAFA, B.S. 1971
Purdue University, M.S. 1972
Time in space
|3d 01h 33m|
|Selection||1979 USAF Group|
Payton flew on the STS-51-C mission aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery in January 1985 which launched and returned to land at the Kennedy Space Center, in Florida. STS-51C was the first dedicated Space Shuttle Department of Defense mission. Payton traveled over 1.2 million miles in 48 Earth orbits, and logged more than 73 hours in space.
He is currently Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Schriever Chair in Astronautics at the United States Air Force Academy, teaching Astronautical Engineering.
Payton graduated from high school in Rock Island, Illinois, in 1966. He went on to attend Bradley University, in Peoria, Illinois. After one year at Bradley, he entered the United States Air Force Academy, in Colorado Springs, Colorado, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Astronautical Engineering in 1971. He continued with his graduate education at Purdue University School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, in West Lafayette, Indiana, earning a Master of Science degree in Astronautical and Aeronautical Engineering in 1972. He graduated from pilot training at Craig AFB, in Alabama in 1973.