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Tenn. Tech alumni, trustee heading back to space

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Posted at 3:48 PM, Oct 14, 2021

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A Tennessee Tech alumni is heading back to space.

Barry Wilmore will fly in the Boeing Crew Flight Test.

The test will be the inaugural crewed flight of the CST-100 Starliner to the International Space Station.

Wilmore, who is a NASA Astronaut, has been in space both in 2009 and 2014.

In 2009, Wilmore piloted the Space Shuttle Atlantis on an 11-day mission to the ISS. His trip in 2014 as part of Expedition 41 also took him to the ISS.

Wilmore says the Starliner would've ideally flown in 2019, but delays have pushed it back to Fall 2022.

“We are working diligently, it's busy, very busy. Flying in space is really hard, especially when you are flying a brand new spacecraft," Wilmore said, "This first flight is a test fight just like with an airplane test flight, just more technical.”

Before being chosen for NASA, Wilmore was a Navy test pilot.

Despite living in Houston, Texas, Wilmore returns to Cookeville at least four times a year to attend Tennessee Tech board meetings where he is a trustee.