ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Astronaut from Winter, Wis., readying for third space trip

WINTER, Wis. -- A northern Wisconsin astronaut is getting ready for his third mission into space. Jeff Williams, 50, a native of Winter, is scheduled to blast off in October from Russia. He'll be the science officer and mission commander of the S...

Col. Jeffrey Williams
Williams agreed to go on another six-month mission in 2016.

WINTER, Wis. -- A northern Wisconsin astronaut is getting ready for his third mission into space.

Jeff Williams, 50, a native of Winter, is scheduled to blast off in October from Russia. He'll be the science officer and mission commander of the Soyuz, and will spend six months at the International Space Station.

His parents, Jake and Eunice Williams, are in Winter counting down the days until the mission.

"As usual, I'm kind of nervous a little bit, but I'll get used to it," said Eunice Williams. "I was just wishing I could go up with him."

Williams is in Russia now training for the mission. It's hard work, his mother said, but that suits him.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Give him a good workout," she said. "That's like playtime to him."

Williams' last mission to space was in 2006, when he also spent half a year aboard the space station. When he returned, he shared his experience with schoolchildren in Winter and Hayward.

He said at the time he hopes his missions will inspire area children to work hard in school and to "dream dreams beyond where they would have otherwise." He said inspiring young people is the greatest privilege of his job.

Growing up in Winter, Williams was a brilliant child, fascinated by science, his parents said. They have vivid memories of him experimenting with rockets.

"He'd make them downstairs and then bring it up and light it up and boom, it would explode," his mother said.

Williams told his parents that, if he stays in good health, his goal is to go to the moon.

"I'll let him go if he brings a rock back to me," his mother said.

Related Topics: SCIENCE
What To Read Next
The system crashed earlier this month, grounding flights across the U.S.