Famous Westlaker

Robert F. Overmyer was born on July 14, 1936, in Lorain, Ohio, but the future astronaut considered Westlake his hometown. The Overmyer family lived on Canterbury Road. Robert was nicknamed “Bucky” as a child after a favorite cowboy star of the era. He worked at Dean’s Greenhouse while he was in school. Bucky graduated from Westlake High School in 1954, and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Baldwin Wallace College in 1958. He then received a Master of Science degree in Aeronautics from the U. S. Naval Postgraduate School in 1964.
Colonel Overmyer entered active duty with the Marine Corps in January 1958. His naval flight training took place in Kingsville, Texas. He served one year with Marine Maintenance Squadron 17 in Iwakuni, Japan. Colonel Overmyer was assigned to the Air Force Test Pilots School at Edwards Air Force Base, California. He had more than 7,500 flight hours with over 6,000 in jet aircraft.
Overmyer married Katherine Jones of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania. The couple had three children. He was the pilot for the first fully operational flight of the Shuttle Transportation System, which launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on November 11, 1982. Among his many missions, Overmyer became the commander of a seven-man crew that was launched from Cape Canaveral aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger in April of 1985. That was the same Challenger that suffered disaster the following January.
Colonel Overmyer retired from NASA and the Marine Corps in May 1985. He died on March 22, 1996 in the crash of a light aircraft he was testing.

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