- Hardcover: 400 pages
- Publisher: Arcade Publishing (January 23, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1628728515
- ISBN-13: 978-1628728514
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 108 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,593 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Bringing Columbia Home: The Untold Story of a Lost Space Shuttle and Her Crew
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
"In Bringing Columbia Home, Mike Leinbach and Jonathan Ward have vividly captured the intensity of those very difficult days. They tell the story with compassion but without pulling any punches. The book also reminded me of the spirit of the American people who selflessly worked together to help NASA in its hour of greatest need. It’s a message we all need to remember these days.―Scott Kelly
“A gripping account of a fatal tragedy and the impressive and deeply emotional human response that ensued.”
―Kirkus Reviews, *starred review*
“Gripping and dramatic . . . It’s an important and fascinating chapter in space history, and it finally gets the full treatment it deserves. As told by someone who was involved in the effort from the beginning, it’s also a deeply personal and moving story.”
“Fast-paced and affecting . . . It is a moving and sometimes uncomfortably close account. . . . The unadorned, multisensory narration richly depicts the emotions and everyday acts of heroism of all involved.”
“A grimly captivating new history of the loss of the space shuttle Columbia. . . . Leinbach and Ward set their account apart from other 'Columbia' books by following the story from its central tragedy to its almost unthinkably sad immediate aftermath. . . . Despite the dramatic tragedy at the beginning of the book, it's the quiet stories of perseverance and camaraderie [in the recovery effort] that will linger longest with the reader.”―Christian Science Monitor
“How glowing is our praise of this book? It simply cannot be higher. This book needs to be required reading in high schools and colleges across the United States.”
“Bringing Columbia Home explains a disaster in the Texas skies―and how thousands on the ground helped. . . . [It] shines brightest in telling the story of the search-and-recovery effort.”―Dallas News
"Riveting."―Air & Space magazine (Smithsonian)
"Bringing Columbia Home is a compelling, personal story about the Columbia accident and the efforts to recover―both the debris from the shuttle, and from the accident itself. It’s a reminder that, as we look at the big-picture policy perspective of human spaceflight, it’s also a very personal matter for those who put their lives on the line to fly, and those who support them."―Space Review
“The book Bringing Columbia Home presents vivid details of the preparation and the aftermath of that fateful day when Columbia exploded. I am so grateful that the heartwarming story of the people of East Texas rallying to help the grim search has been brought forth by Michael Leinbach and Jonathan Ward. It is a remarkable account of what a team of professionals with an untrained but willing army of volunteers could achieve.”
―The Honorable Kay Bailey Hutchison, Senator for Texas, 1993-2013
“Mike and Jonathan have done a brilliant job capturing the depth of emotion and human engagement of what has been covered by others only as a technical investigative treatment. In doing so, they have made the story very personal for the thousands of people who invested themselves in this critical chapter of space exploration history. This is a valuable contribution about a defining moment that demonstrates NASA's resolve and the selfless generosity of the American spirit.”
―Sean O'Keefe, former administrator of NASA
“Mike and Jonathan have written an important book about the greatness of the United States and the American people in responding to a national tragedy. This book brought back many memories―and some tears―as I recalled the selfless cooperation of countless agencies and the outpouring of support and prayers from the nation’s citizens, all aimed at getting NASA and the Space Shuttle flying again.”
―Jerry L. Ross, former astronaut, retired USAF Colonel, and author of Spacewalker: My Journey in Space and Faith as NASA's Record-Setting Frequent Flyer
“Spaceflight is an inherently risky business. I had more than my share of close calls in my career. But the Apollo 1 fire and the Challenger and Columbia accidents were grim reminders that we sometimes have to pay a very dear price in the cause for human advancement. In Bringing Columbia Home, Mike Leinbach and Jonathan Ward tell the remarkable story of what NASA and the American people did supremely well after a crisis: supported each other through difficult times, tirelessly looked for solutions, and then moved forward to accomplish bold goals. This engaging and inspiring book reminds us of what Americans look like at their best―cooperative, compassionate, and committed.”
―James Lovell, former astronaut and coauthor of Apollo 13
“I was privileged to call Columbia my home in space for eighteen days. Thanks to this moving and heartfelt story, now I know how many thousands gave their all to bring this storied ship and her crew to an honored rest.”
―Tom Jones, former astronaut and author of Ask the Astronaut and Sky Walking: An Astronaut's Memoir
“Bringing Columbia Home is about tragedy and how tragedy is overcome. Leinbach and Ward have written an intensely compelling book with life lessons for everyone in the space community and ordinary life. It is an intensely human and technological drama.”
―Hugh Harris, former director of public affairs, NASA Kennedy Space Center
“Bringing Columbia Home is a wonderful contribution to spaceflight history, a previously untold story of heroism related responsibly, compassionately, and accurately. The depiction of the entire NASA family's participation in the recovery and investigation is touching and respectful. People are going to love this book.”
―Susan Roy, author of Bomboozled: How the US Government Misled Itself and Its People into Believing They Could Survive a Nuclear Attack
About the Author
Michael D. Leinbach was the last launch director in the space shuttle program at NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center, responsible for overall shuttle launch countdown activities until the end of the program in 2011. In November 2004, Leinbach was awarded the prestigious 2004 Presidential Rank Award. He lives in Scottsmoor, Florida.
Jonathan H. Ward works to bring the thrill of the space program to life for the general public as a Solar System Ambassador for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and as a frequent speaker on space exploration topics to interest groups and at regional conferences. He is the author of two previous books on space exploration. He lives in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Captain Robert L. Crippen, USN, Retired (foreword) was Columbia’s first pilot. He received a bachelor of science degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Texas in 1960. He has received numerous special honors, including the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, three Distinguished Service Medals, the US Navy Distinguished Flying Cross, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the FAA’s Award for Distinguished Service, the Goddard Memorial Trophy, the Harmon Trophy, four NASA Space Flight Medals, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, the Department of Defense Distinguished Service Award, the American Aeronautical Society Flight Achievement Award, the National Geographic Society’s Gardiner Greene Hubbard Medal, the Aviation Hall of Fame 1981 Al J. Engel Award, American Legion’s Distinguished Service Medal, the Society of Experimental Test Pilots Ivan C. Kincheloe Award, and the NASA Exceptional Service Medal. He lives in Orlando, Florida.
Colonel Eileen Collins, USAF, Retired (epilogue) became NASA’s first female shuttle commander on a 1999 mission in the Columbia. She holds a master’s degree in mathematics and economics from Syracuse University, a master’s degree in operations research from Stanford University, and a master’s degree in space systems management from Webster University. She is from Elmira, New York.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
This book gives an excellent accounting of hundreds of witnesses to the largest recovery effort the world has ever seen. I️ can not recommend this book enough.
Bringing Columbia Home is really a story about America and it’s beloved Space Shuttle. How the iconic NASA and thousands of everyday Americans pulled together in a tragic circumstance to ensure the fallen astronaut’s families had closure and moving the space program forward back to flight.
This is a fantastic book and if you’re like me, a kid of the 80s, honors the Space Shuttle which hung on your wall and was as big as your dreams.
The majority of the wreckage fell over eastern Texas and western Louisiana. Within hours of the break-up of Columbia, people were on the ground searching for wreckage and remains of the crew. Two headquarters were established, at Barksdale Air Force Base and in the town of Hemphill, Texas.
Over the next several weeks, the searchers brought home debris that accounted for over forty percent of the shuttle. Most importantly, all seven crew members' remains were recovered and sent to their families. Hemphill and the residents there were a tremendous help in the recovery efforts. The local population embraced the recovery effort with incredible strength as well as a desire to do whatever must be done to recover as much of the shuttle as possible. Bonds were formed between the local population and members of NASA that last to this day. By recovering the debris, this allowed workers to determine what happened to cause the Columbia to break up. It also allowed for the remaining shuttles to return to flight so work on the International Space Station could be completed.
"Bringing Columbia Home" is a fitting tribute to the members of NASA and other agencies who, along with thousands of local residents, worked tirelessly to recover the remains of Columbia's crew and her wreckage. The story is one of heroism and selfless acts of kindness and sacrifice from people working together for a common goal. Highly recommended.