Encyclopedia Astronautica

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Astronaut S. David Griggs waves to Orbiter during EVA
Credit: NASA
Griggs, Stanley David (1939-1989) American test pilot mission specialist astronaut. Flew on STS-51-D. Died in the crash of a World-War-II-era training plane.

Official NASA Biography

NAME: S. David Griggs (Mr.)

NASA Astronaut

BIRTHPLACE AND DATE: Born September 7, 1939, in Portland, Oregon. His parents, Mr. and Mrs. Jack L. Griggs, Sr., reside in Lawrence, Michigan.

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Brown hair; brown eyes; height: 5 feet 10 inches; weight: 175 pounds.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Lincoln High School, Portland, Oregon, in 1957; received a bachelor of science degree from the United States Naval Academy in 1962, and a master of science degree in Administration from George Washington University in 1970.

MARITAL STATUS: Married to the former Karen Frances Kreeb of Lake Ronkonkoma, Long Island, New York. Her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kreeb, reside in Lake Ronkonkoma, New York.

CHILDREN: Alison Marie, August 21, 1971; and Carre Anne, May 14, 1974.

RECREATIONAL INTERESTS: He enjoys flying, auto restoration, running, and skiing.

ORGANIZATIONS: Member, Society of Experimental Test Pilots; National Air Racing Group, Reserve Officer Association, Naval Reserve Association, Naval Academy Alumni Association, Association of Naval Aviators. Naval Institute, Naval Aviation Museum Foundation, Naval Order of the United States, American Legion.

SPECIAL HONORS: Awarded the Navy Distinguished Flying Cross, 15 Air Medals, 3 Navy Commendation Medals, Navy Unit Commendation, Meritorious Unit Citation, Defense Distinguished Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, NASA Space Flight Medal, NASA Achievement Award, and NASA Sustained Superior Performance Award.

EXPERIENCE: Mr. Griggs graduated from Annapolis in 1962, and entered pilot training shortly thereafter. In 1964, he received his Navy wings and was attached to Attack Squadron-72 flying A-4 aircraft. He completed one Mediterranean cruise and two Southeast Asia combat cruises aboard the aircraft carriers USS INDEPENDENCE and USS ROOSEVELT. Mr. Griggs entered the U.S. Naval Text Pilot School at Patuxent River, Maryland, in 1967, and upon completion of test pilot training, was assigned to the Flying Qualities and Performance Branch, Flight Test Division, where he flew various test projects on fighter and attack-type aircraft. In 1970, he resigned his regular United States Navy commission and affiliated with the Naval Air Reserve in which he currently holds the rank of Rear Admiral.

As a Naval Reservist, Read Admiral Griggs has been assigned to several fighter and attack squadrons flying A-4, A-7, and F-8 aircraft based at Naval Air Station New Orleans, LA, and Miramar, CA. His most recent assignments have been as Commanding Officer, Attack Squadron 2082, Executive Officer, Carrier Group 0282, mobilizing to Battle Force Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean Sea, and Technical Advisor for Space Affairs, Office of Naval Research/Naval Research Laboratory 410. He is presently Commanding Officer, Naval Research Naval Space Command 0166 stationed at the Naval Space Command Headquarters, Dahlgren, Virginia, and Commanding Officer, Office of Naval Research/Naval Research Laboratory 410, Houston, Texas. Rear Admiral Grigg's current mobilization assignment is as Chief of Staff Commander Naval Air Force, United States Pacific Fleet, San Diego, California.

He has logged 9,500 hours flying time -- 7,800 hours in jet aircraft -- and has flown over 45 different types of aircraft including single and multi-engine prop, turbo prop and jet aircraft, helicopters, gliders, hot air balloons and the Space Shuttle. He has made over 300 carrier landings, and holds an airline transport pilot license and is a certified flight instructor.

NASA EXPERIENCE: Mr. Griggs has been employed at the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center as a research pilot since July 1970, and during this time, he has worked on various flight test and research projects in support of NASA programs. In 1974, he was assigned duties as the project pilot for the Shuttle trainer aircraft and participated in the design, development, and testing of those aircraft pending their operational deployment in 1976. He was appointed Chief of the Shuttle Training Aircraft Operations Office in January 1976, with responsibility for the operational use of the Shuttle trainer, and held that position until being selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in January 1978. In August 1979, he completed a 1-year training and evaluation period and became eligible for Space Shuttle flight crew assignment.

From 1979 to 1983 Mr. Griggs was involved in several Space Shuttle engineering capacities including the development and testing of the Head-Up Display (HUD) approach and landing avionics system, development of the Manned Maneuvering Unit (MMU), and the requirements definition and verification of on-orbit rendezvous and entry flight phase software and procedures. In September 1983 he began crew training as a mission specialist for fight STS 51-D, which flew April 12-19, 1985. During the flight, Mr. Griggs conducted the first unscheduled extravehicular activity (space walk) of the space program. The space walk lasted for over 3 hours during which preparations for a satellite rescue attempt were completed.

Died June 17, 1989, near Earle, Arkansas, in the crash of a World-War-II-era training plane.

JUNE, 1989

Birth Place: Portland, Oregon.
Status: Deceased.

Born: 1939.09.07.
Died: 1989.06.17.
Spaceflights: 1 .
Total time in space: 7.00 days.

More... - Chronology...

Associated Countries
See also
  • NASA Group 8 - 1978 Requirement: pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Recruit women and minorities to introduce diversity into the astronaut corps. Nickname: TFNG - Thirty-Five New Guys, also an obscene military phrase. More...

Associated Flights
  • STS-41-F Crew: Bobko, Williams Donald, Seddon, Griggs, Hoffman. Canceled after the STS-10 launch abort required reshuffling of the shuttle schedule. Planned shuttle mission for deployment of commercial communications satellites. The STS-41F payload was added to STS-41D.Officially "cancelled due to payload delays". More...
  • STS-51-E Crew: Bobko, Williams Donald, Seddon, Griggs, Hoffman, Baudry, Garn. Planned TDRS/IUS deployment shuttle mission. Cancelled due to IUS failure. More...
  • STS-51-D Crew: Bobko, Garn, Griggs, Hoffman, Seddon, Walker, Williams Donald. First politician in space. Deployed Telesat-I (successful) and Syncom IV-3 (motor failed). Inboard right-side brake locked on landing, resulting in severe damage. Senator aboard resented, and had one of the worst cases of space sickness ever recorded. More...
  • STS-61-K Crew: Brand, Griggs, Stewart, Nicollier, Garriott, Lichtenberg, Lampton, Stevenson. Planned EOM-1 shuttle mission. Cancelled after Challenger disaster. No crew named, later combined with STS-61K Backup crew: Frimout, Chappell. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • USN American agency overseeing development of rockets, spacecraft, and rocket engines. USN Joint Task Force 7, USA. More...

Associated Programs
  • STS The Space Transportation System (Space Shuttle) was conceived originally as a completely reusable system that would provide cheap, routine access to space and replace all American and civilian military launch vehicles. Crippled by technological overreach, political compromise, and budget limitations, it instead ended up costing more than the expendable rockets it was to have replaced. STS sucked the money out of all other NASA projects for half a century. The military abandoned its use after the Challenger shuttle explosion in the 1980's. More...

  • NASA Astronaut Biographies, Johnson Space Center, NASA, 1995-present. Web Address when accessed: here.

Griggs Chronology

1978 January 16 - .
  • NASA Astronaut Training Group 8 selected. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bluford; Brandenstein; Buchli; Coats; Covey; Creighton; Fabian; Fisher; Gardner; Gibson; Gregory; Griggs; Hart; Hauck; Hawley; Hoffman; Lucid; McBride; McNair; Mullane; Nagel; Nelson; Onizuka; Resnik; Ride; Scobee; Seddon; Shaw; Shriver; Stewart; Sullivan. The group was selected to provide pilot, engineer, and scientist astronauts for space shuttle flights. Recruit women and minorities to introduce diversity into the astronaut corps. Qualifications: Pilots: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics. Advanced degree desirable. At least 1,000 flight-hours of pilot-in-command time. Flight test experience desirable. Excellent health. Vision minimum 20/50 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20 vision; maximum sitting blood pressure 140/90. Height between 163 and 193 cm.

    Mission Specialists: Bachelor's degree in engineering, biological science, physical science or mathematics and minimum three years of related experience or an advanced degree. Vision minimum 20/150 uncorrected, correctable to 20/20. Maximum sitting blood pressure of 140/90. Height between 150 and 193 cm.. 8,079 applicants, of which half met the basic qualifications. 208 invited for physical tests and interviews. Of the 35 selected, six were women, three were male African-Americans, and one was a male Asian-American.

1984 August - .
1985 March - .
1985 April 12 - . 13:59 GMT - . Launch Site: Cape Canaveral. Launch Complex: Cape Canaveral LC39A. LV Family: Shuttle. Launch Vehicle: Shuttle. LV Configuration: Space Shuttle STS-23/51-D.
  • STS-51-D - . Call Sign: Discovery. Crew: Bobko; Garn; Griggs; Hoffman; Seddon; Walker; Williams, Donald. Payload: Discovery F04 / Anik C1[PAM-D] / Syncom-4 3 /Orbus. Mass: 16,249 kg (35,822 lb). Nation: USA. Related Persons: Bobko; Garn; Griggs; Hoffman; Seddon; Walker; Williams, Donald. Agency: NASA Houston. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-51-D. Spacecraft: Discovery. Duration: 7.00 days. Decay Date: 1985-04-19 . USAF Sat Cat: 15641 . COSPAR: 1985-028A. Apogee: 535 km (332 mi). Perigee: 445 km (276 mi). Inclination: 28.5000 deg. Period: 94.40 min. Manned seven crew. Payloads: Telesat (Canada communications satellite)-I with Payload Assist Module (PAM)-D deployment, Syncom IV-3 communications satellite deploy-ment with its unique stage (unique stage failed to ignite), Continuous Flow Electrophoresis (CFES), Phase Partitioning Experiment (PPE), student experiments, two getaway specials (GAS) Informal science studies (Toys in Space).

1985 April 16 - .
  • EVA STS-51-D-1 - . Crew: Hoffman; Griggs. EVA Type: Extra-Vehicular Activity. EVA Duration: 0.13 days. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Hoffman; Griggs. Program: STS. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Flight: STS-51-D. Spacecraft: Discovery. Summary: RMS 'Ryswatters' installed..

1985 April 19 - .
1986 October - .
1989 June 17 - .
  • Astronaut Stanley David Griggs dies at age of 49 -- Crash of a World-War-II-era training plane. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Griggs. Summary: American test pilot mission specialist astronaut. Flew on STS-51-D..

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