"I know this much," O'Donohoe concluded, "I know that Rick and Mike are in heaven. I'm just sad because they are not with me. But we'll be together again someday. I know that it would have been better for us for Rick and Mike to live, but they're with Jesus now, and that's better for them."

 

In Their Own Words

 

Following are excerpts from NASA's official pre-flight interview for STS-107 that demonstrate how Husband and Anderson felt about their faith:

 

NASA: Outside of your time with NASA, what's been your most enjoyable time or experience in life?

 

Rick Husband: Well, I think apart from NASA, the most enjoyable part of my life has been my time with my family. And, if you think about, probably the pinnacle or the most exciting or memorable events, I would say probably my marriage and then the birth of our two children, and being there with my wife, and just the awesome experience of seeing a baby come into the world. And just being so overwhelmed with God's goodness in blessing us with two wonderful children.

 

NASA: One of your hobbies is singing. Was that something that you had as a kid? Or, is this recent?

 

Rick Husband: Well, I've been singing for a long time. Whenever I was growing up going to church, I sang in church choir as a real little kid. And then, I sang in choir in school, elementary, junior high, and high school. I sang in a barbershop quartet for several years with different groups of guys. And, when I went off to college, I was majoring in engineering but still was very interested in music because it was just such an enjoyable part of my life. I just really love music, and I love singing.

 

And so, while I was taking engineering courses, I was also a member of the Texas Tech Choir, with all these other music majors and everything. And so, I was very fortunate to be able to be in that choir. It served as a tremendous outlet for me, to kind of broaden my horizons and my experience in the different types of music that we sang. And then after college I primarily have spent my time singing in church choir. And sometimes in community choirs, depending on where we lived at the time. And, I continue to sing in a church choir today. So, it's something that I really, really enjoy.

 

NASA: What's the experience like? What does it do for you? Is it therapeutic?

 

Rick Husband: Oh, being able to sing, especially when you're singing a song just from the standpoint of if it's something that you really think is a beautiful song and you can really belt it out, or sing it with the kind of precision that's necessary to sing, just depending on the type of song it is. It, first of all, I think gives you a feeling of teamwork with the other members of the choir. It also gives you a feeling of almost release, in my particular case, because, it's, I'd say, very relaxing.

And then, especially with some of the songs that we sing in church, just being able to sing a song to tell God how much I love Him, it just feels great. It really does. And I think it's probably almost as good as exercising.