Frederick D. Gregory (Colonel, USAF) NASA Astronaut
Source: Johnson Space Center July 1993


Born January 7, 1941, in Washington, D.C. His mother, Mrs. Nora D. Gregory, is a resident of Washington, D.C.


Brown hair; brown eyes; 5 feet 11 inches; 190 pounds.


Graduated from Anacostia High School, Washington, D.C., in 1958; received a Bachelor of Science degree from the United States Air Force Academy in 1964, and a Master's degree in Information Systems from George Washington University in 1977.


Married to the former Barbara Archer of Washington, D.C. Her father, Mr. Aaron E. Archer, resides in Forest Heights, Maryland.


Frederick, D., Jr., a Captain in the Air Force, and a graduate of Stanford University. Heather Lynn, a social worker and graduate of Sweet Briar College.


During his free time, he enjoys water skiing, fishing, hunting, specialty cars, and stereo equipment.


Member, Society of Experimental Test Pilots, Order of Daedalians, American Helicopter Society, Air Force Academy Association of Graduates, the Air Force Association, Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, the National Technical Association, and the Tuskegee Airmen. He is also on the Board of Directors for the Young Astronaut Council, the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, and the Virginia Air and Space Center - Hampton Roads History Center.


Awarded the Defense Superior Service Medal, 2 Distinguished Flying Crosses, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, 16 Air Medals, the Air Force Commendation Medal, and 3 NASA Space Flight Medals. Recipient of the NASA Outstanding Leadership Award; the National Society of Black Engineers Distinguished National Scientist Award (1979); an honorary doctor of science degree from the University of the District of Columbia (1986); and the George Washington University Distinguished Alumni Award. Designated an "Ira Eaker Fellow" by the Air Force Association. Recipient of numerous NASA group and individual achievement awards as well as civic and community awards.


After graduating from the United States Air Force Academy in 1964, Gregory entered pilot training and attended undergraduate helicopter training at Stead Air Force Base, Nevada. He received his wings in 1965 and was assigned as an H-43 helicopter rescue pilot at Vance AFB, Oklahoma, from October 1965 until May 1966. In June 1966, he was assigned as an H-43 combat rescue pilot at Danang AB, Vietnam. When he returned to the United States in July 1967, he was assigned as a missile support helicopter pilot flying the UH-1F at Whiteman AFB, Missouri. In January 1968, Gregory was retrained as a fixed-wing pilot flying the T-38 at Randolph AFB, Texas. He was then assigned to the F-4 Phantom Combat Crew Training Wing at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona. Gregory attended the United States Naval Test Pilot School at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Maryland, from September 1970 to June 1971.

Following completion of his training, he was assigned to the 4950th Test Wing, Wright Patterson AFB. Ohio, as an operational test pilot flying fighters and helicopters. In June 1974, Gregory was detailed to the NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, Virginia. He served as a research test pilot at Langley until selected for the Astronaut Program in January 1978.

Gregory has logged more than 6,976 hours flying time in over 50 types of aircraft -- including 550 combat missions in Vietnam. He holds an FAA commercial and instrument certificate for single and multi-engine airplanes and helicopters. He has authored or co-authored several papers in the areas of aircraft handling qualities and cockpit design.


Gregory was selected as an astronaut in January 1978. His technical assignments include: Astronaut Office representative at the Kennedy Space Center during initial Orbiter checkout and launch support for STS-1 and STS-2; Flight Data File Manager; lead spacecraft communicator (CAPCOM); Chief, Operational Safety, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C.; Chief, Astronaut Training; and a member of the Orbiter Configuration Control Board and the Space Shuttle Program Control Board. A veteran of three Shuttle missions, he served as pilot on STS-51B (April 29 - May 6, 1985), and was the spacecraft commander on STS-33 (November 22-27, 1989), and STS-44 (November 24 - December 1, 1991).

On his first mission, Gregory was pilot on STS- 51B/Spacelab-3 which launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on April 29, 1985. The crew on board the Orbiter Challenger included spacecraft commander, Robert Overmyer; mission specialist, Norman Thagard, William Thornton, and Don Lind; and payload specialists, Taylor Wang and Lodewijk Vandenberg. On this second flight of the laboratory developed by the European Space Agency (ESA), the crew members conducted a broad range of scientific experiments ranging from space physics to the suitability of animal-holding facilities. The crew also deployed the Northern Utah Satellite (NUSAT). After seven days of around-the-clock scientific operations, Challenger and its laboratory cargo landed on the dry lakebed at Edwards AFB, California, on May 6, 1985.

He was the spacecraft commander on STS-33 which launched at night, from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on November 22, 1989. On board the Orbiter Discovery, his crew included the pilot, John Blaha, and three mission specialists, Manley (Sonny) Carter, Story Musgrave, and Kathryn Thornton. The mission carried Department of Defense payloads and other secondary payloads. After 79 orbits of the Earth, this five- day mission concluded on November 27, 1989, with a hard surface landing on Runway 04 at Edwards AFB, California.

More recently, Gregory commanded a crew of six aboard the Orbiter Atlantis. STS-44 launched at night on November 24, 1991, from Kennedy Space Flight Center, Florida. During 110 orbits of the Earth, the crew successfully deployed their prime payload, the Defense Support Program (DSP) satellite. They worked on a variety of secondary payloads ranging from the Military Man in Space experiment designed to evaluate the ability of a spaceborne observer to gather information about ground troops, equipment and facilities, and also participated in extensive studies evaluating medical countermeasures to long duration space flight. His crew included the pilot Tom Henricks; three mission specialists, Story Musgrave, Jim Voss, and Mario Runco Jr., and payload specialist Tom Hennen. The mission concluded on December 1, 1991, with a landing at Edwards Air Force Base in California. With the completion of his third mission, Gregory has logged over 455 hours in space.

Current Assignment: On April 28, 1992, Colonel Gregory was appointed Associate Administrator, Office of Safety and Mission Quality, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C.


Currently Associate Administrator, Safety & Mission Assurance, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C.



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