April 12, 1981

1981: SPACE SHUTTLE’S MAIDEN VOYAGE–The Space Shuttle Columbia with Robert Crippen (USN) and John Young (USN) on board launched on the first flight of a reusable spacecraft. On 14 April, they returned from space and landed at Rogers Dry Lake at Edwards AFB for the first time. USAF space tracking and communications systems under ADC’s and the Air Force Communications Command’s operational control supported this mission.