NASA astronaut Bios

November 27, 2015
(photo courtesy NASA/Dominic

Steven R. Nagel (Colonel, U.S. Air Force, Ret.)
NASA Astronaut (Deceased)

PERSONAL DATA: Born October 27, 1946, in Canton, Illinois. Married to Linda M. Godwin of Houston, Texas. Two daughters. His hobbies include sport flying and astronomy.

EDUCATION: Graduated from Canton Senior High School, Canton, Illinois, in 1964; received a bachelor of science degree in aerospace engineering (high honors) from the University of Illinois in 1969 and a master of science degree in mechanical engineering from California State University, Fresno, California, in 1978.

ORGANIZATIONS: Order of Daedalians, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Society of Experimental Test Pilots, Association of Space Explorers.

SPECIAL HONORS: Awarded the Air Force Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with 7 Oak Leaf Clusters; for undergraduate pilot training, recipient of the Commander’s Trophy, the Flying Trophy, the Academic Trophy and the Orville Wright Achievement Award (Order of Daedalians). Also presented the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal (1978). Recipient of four NASA Space Flight Medals (1985, 1991, 1993); Exceptional Service Medals (1988, 1989); Outstanding Leadership Medal (1992); AAS Flight Achievement Award, STS-37 Crew (1992); Outstanding Alumni Award, University of Illinois (1992); Distinguished Service Medal (1994), Distinguished Alumni Award, California State University, Fresno (1994) and Lincoln Laureate, State of Illinois (1994).

EXPERIENCE: Nagel received his commission in 1969 through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) program at the University of Illinois. He completed undergraduate pilot training at Laredo Air Force Base, Texas, in February 1970, and subsequently reported to Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, for F-100 training.

From October 1970 to July 1971, Nagel was an F-100 pilot with the 68th Tactical Fighter Squadron at England Air Force Base, Louisiana. He served a 1-year tour of duty as a T-28 instructor for the Laotian Air Force at Udorn RTAFB, Udorn, Thailand, prior to returning to the United States in October 1972 to assume A-7D instructor pilot and flight examiner duties at England Air Force Base, Louisiana. Nagel attended the USAF Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, California, from February to December 1975. In January 1976, he was assigned to the 6512th Test Squadron located at Edwards. As a test pilot, he worked on various projects, including flying the F-4 and A-7D.

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