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Jake Garn
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U.S. Senator
    (October 12, 1932- )
    Born in Richfield, Utah
    Birth name was Edwin Jacob Garn
    Mayor of Salt Lake City (1972-74)
    Senator from Utah (1974-93)
    Republican
    Payload Specialist on the shuttle Discovery during NASA mission STS 51-D (April 12-19, 1985)
    Wrote the novel ‘Night Launch’ with Stephen Paul Cohen (1989)
    He co-authored the Garn-St. Germain Act deregulating the savings and loan industry, paving the way for Charles Keating, Neil Bush and a $500 billion federal bailout.
    He used his position as head of the Senate appropriations subcommittee that dealt with NASA’s budget to wrangle a seat on the space shuttle.
    He suffered so much motion sickness in space that he inspired a ‘Garn scale’ for measuring nausea. (Noted Dr. Robert Stevenson, ‘The mark of being totally sick and totally incapacitated is one Garn. Most [astronauts] will get maybe to a tenth of a Garn, if that high.’)
    He admitted to the Washington Post that ‘99% of the actual writing’ of ‘Night Launch’ was done by Cohen; Garn’s main contribution was ordering the deletion of a zero-gravity sex scene.
    His first wife Hazel died in a car crash.
    He donated a kidney to his daughter Susan (1986).
    He regularly did one hundred pushups a day in his 70s.
    As a pilot in the US Navy and Utah Air National Guard, he flew over 10,000 hours in military and civilian aircraft – more flight time than had been logged by all but one of NASA’s 91 active astronauts in 1985.
    He kept a sense of humor about the Garn scale: ‘I’ve been very proud of the fact that they named something after me after all these years, even if it was unofficial.’

Credit: C. Fishel


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