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Shuttle astronaut John Lounge dies at 64

HOUSTON - Three-time space shuttle crew member John Lounge, who was part of the first shuttle mission after the 1986 shuttle Challenger disaster, has died at age 64.

NASA said in a statement that Lounge died last Tuesday in Houston.

A cause of death wasn't released.

The Navy veteran joined the astronaut corps in 1980 and flew his first mission aboard the shuttle Discovery in 1985.

His second mission came in 1988, when he was part of a Discovery mission that was the first flight after Challenger blew up during launch.

The Denver native's last flight came aboard Columbia in 1990.

In all, Lounge logged 20 days in space before resigning from the astronaut corps to become director of space shuttle and space station program development for Boeing-NASA Systems.

- AP

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