Sally Ride, and Youthful Ignorance

RIP, Sally. You were a hero to me.

And that was before I knew you were the first lesbian to make it into space…

In all seriousness, I thought this song was about her!

She most certainly deserves respect. And I have no doubt; her place in history is secure.

Support independent journalism

  • mikeca

    When Sally Ride was at NASA she was either dating or married to Steven Hawley, another NASA astronaut. They met at NASA astronaut training. in 1978 and were married in 1982. They divorced in 1987, the year Sally Ride left NASA. Sally had a lesbian partner since 1985.

    In 1978-9 Sally and Steven were very worried what NASA would think of their heterosexual relationship. (I know this because I was an acquaintance of Steven Hawley in 1977-9).

    I guess Sally Ride decided she was a lesbian around 1985, but her divorce was not final until 1987, the same year she left NASA. She chose to never go public with her lesbian orientation, which is the reason you never knew about it.

  • jaymaster

    Thanks for the info, Mike.

    That makes me wonder, was NASA operating under the don’t ask/don’t tell policy?

    As an astronaut, I would think she possibly was.