Transcript for Astronaut Christina Koch returns home after 1 year in space
After nearly a year in space astronaut Christina cook is finally back here on earth. ABC's David Curley brings us a story behind her record setting journey. Christina cook your record holder. The rookie who set records flashed two thumbs up on her triumphant return to earth. 328. Days in space a record for a woman. 5200 orbits six spacewalks including the first American. All woman space walk good morning David welcome or the International Space Station. We had a chance to speak to Christina cook as she prepared for today's return what's been the hardest thing going more than 300 days in the station for you. I think the challenge is actually remaining vigilant remembering that you really are I'm surrounded by a hostile environment and that. A single emergency or single you know set of string of failures could bring new. It into a chance where you have to exercise some of that really important training that we had on the grounds that just remembering how special it is here. And focusing on everything that I have and not necessarily the things that aren't in my environment. What a ride for this electrical engineer who once built space science instruments. And did research at the Earth's poles before applying to become an astronaut. The unifying theme has been discovery on the frontiers which is why I'm so excited to be a part. The space program. Part of the 2013. Astronaut class cook had to learn how to fly trained to walk in space and then finally last year and lift off. The nod to fly on the Russian so used to the International Space Station. What was it like. On the rocket what was it like opening the hatch and getting into the station. You know as we're preparing to launch it feels a lot like one of our simulation events and then the only difference was when the countdown got to zero we actually started moving. I looked out the window and the earth down below for the first time and actually exclaimed out loud and again as we have trained for so many years to walk into the actual reality of the space station like the fact that it actually danced. I'm was just it was like walking into in the grease that. But the station became her home for much longer than expected NASA extending her mission. Giving her the opportunity for those two records duration and this week. That first all female American space walk with Jessica Mayer. Followed by two more excursions by the same duo. On that first all female space walk Bette Jessica and I did. We were truly overwhelmed by the amount of support. By the amount of enthusiasm and by the amount of people that reached out so let us know that it did serve as inspiration to them the third time around it's already become commonplace we recognize now that. We're doing the job the same as any of our colleagues and we're all excelling. We all are held to the same standards very high standards. Cook broke the record of astronaut Peggy Woodson who was there for coats first pool session on the ground. And sent a message from a training plane. Happy orient. Ileana gravity. I'm very happy for Christina. She's accomplished a lot being up there on her very first space flight being an outline and it's and it's. It's pretty. I think it dawned team not knowing how you're going to like it too greedy do. Extra arm mentioned like. Christina cook nearly set the all time record for an American long duration flight she was just twelve days short. A Scott Kelly's time in the station what contribution do you think you may have made this time. As a scientist. Obviously Scott Kelly is missing Davis one data point and that. And now this hopefully will expand that by second data points to that we can look at what sort of the state the same what's different. And then in addition the differences between women and men in that capacity. The North Carolina native says she missed chips and salsa the most no crunchy or flaky foods a lot on the space station. She said are good byes this morning and boarded the so used for the flight to earth. She will reunite with her husband but told us she's already thinking a flying again. I think will I ever be back here you know my saying goodbye for the last time or will live to get to come back and if so how will it change I have had such practice in now so. With a little little luck I will get a chance to do a future mission. All right I should ask their before we say good bye. Gravity you miss it is that a good thing. I only miss it when I just really want to put things down occasionally but I've got news about Graham and taping things down and stats I don't really does that it's a lot more from about it as she wasted no time in demonstrating for us. Tonight he. Christina cook is back in gravity she tells us first on her things to do list is a swim in the Gulf of Mexico. David Curley ABC news Washington. No gravity pursuits insults that's a tough one.
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