Astronaut Greg Johnson Lands at NABC
NASA Astronaut, Gregory Johnson, former Pilot of STS-123 Endeavor was a big hit on Friday, March 13th, at the Spring NABC in Houston. A large crowd was on hand as Johnson presented the ACBL with a playing card, the Ace of Spades, that traveled with him for 6.6 million miles in space. The STS-123 orbited the earth 250 times in 15 days and 18 hours.
According to Johnson, each astronaut is allowed to fly up to ten items honoring organizations of their choosing. These items are collected, vacuum packed and documented on the official Space Shuttle manifest. Johnson stated that he flew the ace of spaces (from an official ACBL deck of cards) to honor the ACBL and his love of bridge. Johnson began playing duplicate bridge as a new Air Force pilot in 1988 and became a Life Master in 2002.
During his presentation of the card to Jay Baum, CEO of the ACBL, Johnson stated, "It is an interesting coincidence that the 2009 Houston NABC spans the same days, one year later, of my space flight last year. I am honored to be able to present the card to the ACBL during the first weekend of the tournament."