Astronaut visits San Gabriel Mission schools

Former astronaut Jose Hernandez speaks at San Gabriel Mission High School.

“Anything is possible if you work hard and do well in school,” was the primary message from retired NASA astronaut Jose Hernandez, who recently addressed students at San Gabriel Mission Elementary and High Schools. 

The high school auditorium was packed with students, teachers, staff and parents who heard Hernandez’s personal story that began in the sugar beet fields near Stockton and continued to his recent trip into outer space in 2009.

As the son of immigrant farm workers, Hernandez worked alongside his parents and siblings, picking crops and spending nine months of the year in California and three months in Mexico. His family eventually settled near Stockton.

Hernandez wanted to be an astronaut after watching the Apollo 17 mission at age 10. His father encouraged him and together they plotted out a roadmap to his dreams that included perseverance (and earning a M.S. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from UC Santa Barbara). That was good advice for Hernandez who was turned down 11 times for the space program before finally being accepted.

After extensive training, Hernandez blasted off into space on Aug. 28, 2009, to realize his dream, with his parents and second grade teacher cheering him on.


Voices

Suicide: Reclaiming the memory of our loved one

Father Ronald Rolheiser, OMI

Each year I write a column on suicide. Mostly I say the same thing over and over again, simply because it needs to be said. I don’t claim any originality or special insight, I only write about suicide because there is such a desperate need for anyone to address the question.

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July 26, 2014

  • Saturday, July 26

    Bioethics & Eugenics Conference, presented by L.A. Archdiocese and National Bioethics Center, Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, 555 W. Temple St., L.A.; $. (626) 445-8481.

    Elementary Specialization, presented by Office of Religious Education, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (also July 27), La Purísima Concepción Church, 213 W. Olive Ave., Lompoc; $. (213) 637-7410.

    “Lord, How Can I Know the Way?” workshop and tour presented by Office of Family Life (Separated, Divorced & Widowed Ministry), led by Fr. Patrick Hill, 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, 555 W. Temple St., L.A.; $. (213) 637-7249.

    Villanova BBQ, 90th anniversary kickoff, 12:30-3 p.m., 12096 Ventura Ave., Ojai; $. (805) 646-1464.

    “At the Table,” Mass and fundraiser dinner, 5 p.m., Mary & Joseph Retreat Center, 5300 Crest Rd., Rancho Palos Verdes; $. (310) 377-4867.

    St. John Paul II Awards Dinner, presented by L.A. Archdiocese and National Bioethics Center, Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, 120 S. Los Angeles St., L.A.; $. (626) 445-8481.

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