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Colonel Chris Hadfield
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Colonel Chris Hadfield

Another first for Sarnia's favorite astronaut, Colonel Chris Hadfield. While blissfully zooming across vast reaches of space Col. Hadfield led a Nationwide Singalong with schoolchildren all across our great nation. From the Island of Newfoundland in the east to Vancouver Island in the west, Thousands of students across this great land raised their voices in unison as they sang along with Chris.

Col. Hadfield blasted off from Kazakhstan December 19, within two days he will have transferred from the Soyuz Rocket to the International Space Station. Undoubtedly the Christmas of 2012, will be one long remembered by Col. Hadfield and his family. Chris has been kept quite busy snapping pictures of Sarnia for his hometown fans from the windows of the ISS. This being done in conjunction with his many other duties as the commander of the station which came under his command in early March 2013.

The photograph accompanying this article was taken from the window of the International Space Station as it was gliding along through outer space. I am truly amazed at the clarity of that picture. You can even see the Bluewater Bridge. Although you cannot tell that it is a double span.

Chris is also involved with speaking in the local schools. The students really adore him. He always seems to find some time to spend with them. The younger generation has grown up with space travel and astronauts, men walking on the moon, and NASA talking about manned missions to Mars in the next two decades. Everything is old hat to them.

Just yesterday as Chris was enjoying his sing along with the Canadian students everything was so peaceful and serene that any sense of danger was light years from everyone's mind. Just a few short hours later alarms started going off heralding an ammonia leak aboard the space station. Although the leak does not present a life threatening issue at the present time it does present a dangerous situation all on its own.

At the present time they are not aware of where the leak is. They are pretty sure however that it is in one of the coils outside of the space station as the astronauts can see a stream of frozen ammonia sliding past the stations windows. At the present time the crew is awaiting instructions from the support crew from NASA's Houston Space Center. There will undoubtedly be a space walk planned for an inspection tour of the stations exterior cooling coils to see if they can spot the leak and have it repaired so Commander Hadfield's return trip to earth on Monday will not have to be postponed.

Hopefully this ammonia leak will be repaired quickly and efficiently so that we can welcome Sarnia's Favorite Astronaut on a safe return to Earth on Monday. "May The Force Be With You" Colonel Chris Hadfield.


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