It’s early 2016 – March to be precise – and Scott Kelly has just arrived back on Earth. He’s just spent 340 days aboard the International Space Station – the longest stint that an American astronaut has ever completed. But as the days wear on, the real impact of his record-breaking mission becomes apparent.
In February of 1964, Richard and Patricia Kelly welcomed son, Scott, into the world, alongside his twin brother, Mark. Growing up in the New Jersey suburb of West Orange, in the later years of high school, Kelly took a job working as a paramedic in the local community. And after graduating in 1982, he began attending the University of Maryland in Baltimore.
While at college, Kelly discovered The Right Stuff, Tom Wolfe’s 1979 book about the early days of space flight. Inspired by the pilots preparing to take mankind to the stars, he decided that naval aviation was the career for him. But sadly, his application to join his brother at the United States Merchant Marine Academy was turned down.