Support our mission
Retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, answers some questions about life in space after speaking to students and their families at Zukeran Elementary School on Camp Foster Monday.

Retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, answers some questions about life in space after speaking to students and their families at Zukeran Elementary School on Camp Foster Monday. (Cindy Fisher / S&S)

Retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, answers some questions about life in space after speaking to students and their families at Zukeran Elementary School on Camp Foster Monday.

Retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, answers some questions about life in space after speaking to students and their families at Zukeran Elementary School on Camp Foster Monday. (Cindy Fisher / S&S)

Kids at Zukeran Elementary School fill the gymnasium on their day off to hear retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, speak about his experience in the space program.

Kids at Zukeran Elementary School fill the gymnasium on their day off to hear retired Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., a former astronaut, speak about his experience in the space program. (Cindy Fisher / S&S)

CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — Department of Defense Dependents Schools-Pacific students had Monday off, but kids showed up at four Okinawa elementary schools anyway.

Kinser, Stearley Heights, Zukeran and E.C. Killin elementary school students and their families packed their school auditoriums to hear a far out speaker: retired Marine Maj. Gen. Charles F. Bolden, a former astronaut who has logged more than 680 hours in space.

Bolden, who was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame on May 6, visited each school to pass along life lessons and talk about his experiences in space.

The students asked the former astronaut questions ranging from “How do you stay on the toilet?” and “How do rockets work?” to “What planets have you seen?”

In between answering questions, Bolden told students: “No matter what you want to do in life, you have to study hard.”

And: “Don’t be afraid of failure; life is like that.” He told students he applied to be a test pilot twice a year for seven years before he was finally accepted into that program — a program that led to his becoming an astronaut.


Stripes in 7



around the web


Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up