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Tanque Verde Dems: Captain Mark Kelly
April 20 @ 9:30 am - 11:00 am
The speaker at this month’s Tanque Verde Dems meeting will be Senate candidate Captain Mark Kelly. The son of two police officers, Captain Kelly is a retired U.S. Navy combat pilot, engineer, and NASA astronaut and small business owner. He lives in Tucson with his wife, former Congresswoman Gabby Giffords.
As a naval aviator, Mark made two deployments to the First Gulf War on the aircraft carrier the U.S.S. Midway and flew 39 combat missions in Operation Desert Storm. He’s a graduate of the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School and has logged more than 5,000 flight hours. He’s made over 375 carrier landings.
Mark has earned a number of awards, including the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit and two Distinguished Flying Crosses, and he was selected as an astronaut in 1996. He flew his first of four missions into space in 2001 aboard Space Shuttle Endeavour, the same space shuttle he commanded on its final flight in May 2011.
In January 2013, in the wake of the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Mark and Gabby co-founded the organization ‘GIFFORDS,’ which unites veterans, law enforcement officials, gun owners, faith leaders, and Americans of all stripes to reduce gun violence and make our communities safer.