Officials with Mobile County Public Schools are excited to welcome alumna and astronaut Kay Hire to Murphy High School Monday, February 24.
Hire, a 1977 Murphy graduate, spoke to students and planted an oak tree alongside Mobile County Health Officer Dr. Bert Eichold. Dr. Eichold, who with his wife Carolyn, has donated eight trees to replace some lost during the Christmas Day 2012 tornado.
Representatives of the Mobile County Board of School Commissioners, the Murphy High School Alumni Association and students joined them in the planting.
“It is always exciting to welcome alumni back, and it is a special honor to have Kay Hire,” said Mobile County schools Superintendent Martha Peek. “Kay has accomplished great things and serves as role model for our students, particularly our female students. She has been a Naval Officer and pilot, a NASA engineer and astronaut – someone who has actually been in outer space and orbited earth. Kay has proven that anything is possible if you set goals and work to achieve them.”
Hire has logged 711 hours in space in missions aboard the shuttles Columbia and Endeavour.
“We are delighted that Kay Hire is joining us to plant trees on the campus where she attended high school,” Eichold said. “There’s an old saying that the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today.”