President Clinton officially welcomed astronaut Shannon Lucid back to Earth on Friday, saying her record-breaking six months in space is “a monument to the human spirit.”
“All I can say is, Houston never looked so good,” a smiling Lucid told a crowd of more than 500 in a ceremony at Ellington Field after 188 days aboard the Russian space station Mir.
Clinton said the 53-year-old biochemist’s record stay made her a role model for young people, especially young girls, across the nation.
“I think we’ve all felt we’ve gotten to know Shannon Lucid, just watching her grin and bear it,” Clinton said. “It’s a monument to the human spirit. It’s been an amazing, amazing achievement.”
Still not used to the pull of Earth’s gravity, Lucid did wobble a little as she stepped from the NASA plane. Clinton, who arrived in Houston around the same time on a campaign stop, met her at the plane’s staircase.