Last Rendez-Vous (Ron's Piece) - "Challenger" (1986)

Ronald E. McNair PhD '76 was the second African-American to make a flight to outer space, where he was also the first astronaut to play a musical instrument. He had plans to play a saxophone solo on board his second mission for composer Jean Michel Jarre's album Rendez-Vous (Dreyfus Records, 1986), including participation in the concert via live feed. The plans never came to fruition after McNair and the other nine crew members of the STS-51L mission died tragically in the 1986 Challenger accident. As a tribute to McNair, the album's sixth and last piece is entitled Last Rendez-Vous (Ron's Piece) - 'Challenger'.

Timeline: 1980s
Career: Arts & Humanities
Object: Video
Collection: Integration and Differentiation 1969-1994, Music, NASA, Pop Culture, Ronald E. McNair