A Personal Story...

Who came up with the idea for the patch ?
"It was a collective (crew) effort to put them together".

Can you tell me something about the design proces, where you involved ?
"Yes we all were involved. Generally several iterations are done to highlight the mission and its major goals".

Who designed it, the crew or an artist ?
"Mostly the crew. On a couple of occations we consulted with an artist to gather some ideas".

Each patch reflects the mission, can you tell me more about the symbols on the patchs?
"The STS-61C patch shows the shuttle on re-entry. We wanted to highlight some of the re-entry testing being done on the orbiter Columbia during our mission".

Astronaut Franklin Chang-Diaz, June 2001

The Artwork

Columbia, which opened the era of the Space Transportation System with four orbital flight tests, is featured in re-entry in the emblem designed by the STS-61-C crew to represent the sever team members who will man the vehicle for its seventh STS mission later this year. Golf lettering against black background honors the astronaut crewmembers on the delta pattern surrounding colorful re-entry shock waves, and the payload specialists are honored similarly below the sphere. Representations of the U.S. flag and the constellation Draco flank the emblem's core.

The Crew

This crew was originaly manifasted to fly STS-51I, but due to the problems with the Shuttle schedule the mission was reassigned and flown as STS-61C. The crewmembers for the flight were: Robert L. Gibson is mission commander; Charles F. Bolden, pilot; and mission specialists are George D. Nelson, Steven A. Hawley and Franklin R. Change-Diaz. Payload specialists are Robert J. Cenker of RCA, and Bill Nelson, U.S. House of Representatives, (D., Florida).