From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (ann-parry.com)
June 23, 2022
Honoring America’s first woman in space
“About time! Love it” – Ellen Thomas Ehmer, former Gruman worker
Though it was near high noon on a hot day – not my favorite for capturing outdoor photos – I thoroughly enjoyed the dedication ceremony for the Sally Ride statue in front of Cradle of Aviation Museum on June 17th.
• my Photo Gallery – Sally Ride statue dedication ceremony (Plus, click each photo below to see larger one.)
The inspiring seven-foot bronze statue, titled “The First American Woman in Space,” powerfully commands the new Sally Ride Circle.
• VIDEO: Andy Parton & Nassau County Comptroller Elaine Phillips (Read much of Phillips’ speech near end of this post):
Sally Ride statue
Sally Ride statue
The Project Manager of the “The First American Woman in Space” statue is Steven Barber, a documentary filmmaker. (see above photo)
As Andy Parton, President of Cradle of Aviation Museum, said while thanking those who helped make the statue possible:
“….And, finally, a huge vote of thanks to the man who had the vision and passion to make this project work – Mr. Steve Barber….”
Project Manager Steven Barber introduced the 3 sculptors of Sally Ride statue – GEORGE LUNDEEN, MARK LUNDEEN, and JOEY BAINER (see above photo):
“I want to introduce, in my humble option – and they get a little embarrassed when I say this, but it is true:
These are not just the greatest sculptures in America, these are the greatest sculptures in the world, for many reasons,
the Family Lundeen, George and Mark,
who have believed in me, which is hard to do sometimes,
So anyway, their unwavering spirit has been amazing for me.
So everybody, put your hands together for George and Mark Lundeen, and master sculptor Joey Bainer, behind the tree hiding, Joey is the heir apparent….”
Project Manager Steven Barber also introduced ALEXANDRIA LEGGITT (see above photo):
“….And I do want to also mention we have a great IBM’er, an executive from IBM here, Alexandria Leggit, who has been tireless in the last 2 years.
She has been working with me trying to build the ‘Hidden Figures’ monument.
“So we want to start moving into diversity, which obviously Sally Ride is…”
JULIA LAURIA-BLUM is another of the many accomplished women who attended the Sally Ride statue dedication ceremony. (see above photo)
Now one of the curators at the American Airpower Museum, previously Lauria-Blum was a Curatorial Assistant at the Cradle of Aviation Museum for 14 years.
Plaque inscription on statue pedestal:
First American Woman in Space
Matson Family Foundation
Peter Diamandis: on behalf of the XPRIZE Foundation
Project Manager: Steven C. Barber
Sculptors: Mark Lundeen – Joey Bainer – George Lundeen
Dedicated June 17, 2022
Cradle of Aviation
Nassau County Comptroller Elaine Phillips’ speech:
(video of speech is near start of post)
“…So you’re probably wondering why the Comptroller of Nassau County is standing here talking to you ….
But, when I was elected this past November,
I was the first woman to be elected as the Nassau County Comptroller,
thank you, thank you, yes, and I won’t be the last
And when we actually had our inauguration ceremony here at the Cradle of Aviation,
and beforehand, I was thinking,
What do I say?
You know, I’ve been in politics for X amount of years,
I’ve been in the financial service industry for 35 years,
nobody wants to hear that
And I thought about this museum,
and I thought about women who have made first in science
And Sally Ride came to my mind,
and that day I looked at the young women in the audience
How do you become the first woman,
or the second, or the fifth, or the one-hundredth?
but how do you get ahead in life?
And the answer, one of the answers, is hard work, obviously
but it is also saying Yes when opportunity presents itself
and I will tell you, there are many times
in many of my jobs, careers in the past
Was I fully fully prepared to do the job?
the answer is No
but I said Yes
And you think about it,
Sally Ride, she didn’t grow up thinking she was going to be an astronaut, the first American woman in space
An opportunity came about,
And she applied, out of thousands and thousands of women and men
So, to the young women out in the audience,
When an opportunity comes, it’s OUR responsibility to say YES….”
FEATURE PHOTO (at top of post) – Garden City, N.Y., U.S. June 17, 2022. Statue of astronaut Sally Ride – the first American woman in space – has unveiling and dedication ceremony at the circle in front of Cradle of Aviation Museum in Long Island. (© 2022 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)
Sally Ride Statue at CAM: my PHOTO GALLERY
CAM site: Cradle of Aviation Museum
Steven C. Barber: @StevenWhartonBarber
Space.com article: space.com/astronaut-sally-ride-statue-cradle-aviation
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2015 PHOTO: Below, see the metal sculpture (at left) previously in front of Cradle of Aviation Museum: