Eyes on the Stars


♪♪ When he was
nine years old, Ron, without my parents or myself
knowing his whereabouts, decided to take a mile walk from
our home down to the library, which was, of course,
a public library, but not so public
for black folks when you’re talking about 1959. So as he was walking in there, all these folks were
staring at him because it was white folk only and they were looking at
him saying, you know, “Who is this negro?” So he politely positioned
himself in line to check out his books. Well, this old librarian,
she says, “This library’s not
for coloreds.” He said, “Well, I would like
to check out these books.” She says, “Young man, if you don’t leave this
library right now, I’m gonna call the police.” So he just propped himself up
on the counter… (laughs) and sat there and said,
“I’ll wait.” So, she called the police and
subsequently called my mother. The police came down,
two burly guys, come in and say, “Well,
where’s the disturbance?” She pointed to the little
nine year old boy sitting up on the counter. He says, “Ma’am,
what’s the problem?” So my mother, in the meanwhile,
she was called and she comes down there
praying the whole way there, “Lordy, Jesus, please don’t let
them put my child in jail.” And my mother asked
the librarian, “What’s the problem?” “He wanted to check out
the book. You know your son shouldn’t
be down here.” And the police officer said, “Why don’t you just give
the kid the books?” And my mother said, “He’ll
take good care of them.” And reluctantly, the librarian
gave Ron the books. And my mother said,
“What do you say?” He said, “Thank you, ma’am.”
(laughs) Later on, as youngsters, a show came on TV called,
“Star Trek.” Now, Star Trek showed
the future where there were black folk and white folk
working together, and I just looked at it
as science-fiction, because that wasn’t gonna
happen, really. But Ronald saw it as
science-possibility, you know. He came up during a time
when there was Neil Armstrong
and all of those guys. So how was a colored boy from
South Carolina, wearing glasses, who never flew a plane, how was
he gonna become an astronaut? But Ron was the one
who didn’t accept societal norms as
being his norm. That was for other people. And uh, he got to be aboard
his own Starship Enterprise. ♪♪ Closed Captions by CaptionLink
www.captionlink.com

100 thoughts on “Eyes on the Stars

  1. I always wanted to be in the stars. There's something about the universe that fascinates me. But being dyslexic in numbers and being female prompted some of my family to say, "NASA is no place for a woman. A dyslexic one at that." I listened. Though I still study the cosmos. Galaxies still entrance me. And my new dream career is writing articles for science magazines about space.

  2. Love your story's that give me so much more to think about when it comes to people you love of May not know.

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  4. Storycorps I love your stories and animations keep doing the Awesome Work and spread the Hope around the World and also Do Your Best On the animations.

  5. This was an amazing story it was funny it had history and it was just overall inspiring 😁😁❀️❀️

  6. The sad part is that they didn’t die form the explosions, they died from the impact of the of falling into the ocean.πŸ™πŸΎπŸ˜‡

  7. We drive through McNair's home town (and the street named after him) several times a year on our way to visit my husband's family. Every time I think of this video and of the awesome man he was.

  8. I really like that story I expecially like the kid, he worked hard with practically no advantages and became an astronaut.

  9. Thank you for this video. It gives me hope. I have been around for many years. I suffered the loss of the Space Shuttle Challenger. End space shuttle Columbia. And many many dark times.

    Yet, I have hope.

    The soul and spirit of Ron McNair will not die.

    I still have hope.

  10. I knew a LOT of LEOS like these two, who didn't agree with the laws and would do everything in their power, to not enforce them because contrary to the narrative, the MAJORITY of people didn't agree with Jim Crow!!! Heck that's one of the reasons, almost twice as many whites were lynched than blacks!
    Its sad that most people don't KNOW that! If actual history were taught to our children, we wouldn't be in this political state we're in NOW!!! Because everyone would KNOW, the MAJORITY of our founding fathers were staunch abolitionists,Robert E Lee felt slavery was the most vile EVIL immoral thing a country do and that less than2% of Americans(including27-29% of free blacks)owned or participated in the slave trade! Only 6% of southerners owned slaves and many poor white southerners were considered equals to blacks because back then it was WEALTH that socially divided people, NOT RACE!!! Because back then, race wasn't even thought about as it is TODAY, which is WHY some of the wealthiest plantations were owned by free blacks!!! H€LLLL Louisiana's first black state treasurer, was in the 1860's and he was the 5th wealthiest man in the STATE!!! America's first woman to become a self made millionaire was Sarah Breedlove…the child of former slaves, who created, the most well known recognized brands TODAY in hair care for POC, Madame CJ Walker! Her company employs over 40 THOUSAND people, but our children aren't taught any of this and they're sure AF not taught 3/4 of ALLL WHITE people who came to America did so in CHAINS!!!
    Cause if they were taught that, there wouldn't be this divide between US and the LEFT would instantly lose 98% of their talking points and platform!!! There are actual paintings of black Americans, who're heroes and were known as heroes for well over 100 YEARS, but now they've been reduced to slaves, despite the FACT they were FREE MEN and WOMEN in their lifetime, at the time of the paintings!!! Wake UP AMERICA….we are a LOT MORE UNITED than THEY WANT YOU TO BELIEVE!!!
    I remember when the Challenger crashed and I remember America wept for ALLL of our astronauts who were killed that day….
    This man was INCREDIBLY kind, brilliant and the epitome of what America is about!!!

  11. I had the pleasure of attending Ronald McNair Magnet Middle School (named and celebrated after his impact on florida) when I was younger and it definitely stood up to his legacy.

  12. It's funny which of these shorts just give you the feels and which ones make you cry. Show's you a bit about yourself

  13. I asked my grandma about segregation for a class project and since she was from California and lived there her whole life, she said pretty much everyone thought it was a bunch of nonsense. I guess that makes sense since segregation was mostly in former slave states and California was never a slave state.

  14. You know Great Big Story interviewed the black woman in Star Trek and she’s in NASA so I implore anyone to watch that after this video

  15. You don't find strong black kids like that anymore. Now they're put here whining about Slave days they never experienced and how "oppressed" and traumatized they are.They need safe speed and stupid sh*t like that. Stop complaining and get to WORK!

  16. Fun fact. The original fourth Star Trek movie (the voyage home) took notice of the destruction of the spaceship challenger, and the people who died in it. But damn was this one sad story. The worst part is the crew where just common folk. Teachers, librarians, those kinds of people. I never saw the Challenger and one of the members to be the main focus of this vid.

  17. Also fun fact. This very same library where this incident occurred is a building in his memory filled with images and facts on him. Right beside the new library and his statue and memorial site.

  18. In 1986 my sisters weren't even a year old yet and I wasn't born until January 29, 1988. I just shared this on Twitter but I'm going to try to share it again on the 28th.
    Sad to see that we've continued the trend of calling the cops on black kids and people for no reason. What should the librarian's dumb internet name be? Tattletail Tammy? Time-Waster Tammy? Child-Hater Hattie? Probably-Made-Someone-Die-by-Wasting-Police-Time-Because-She-Was-Afraid-of-a-Nice-Little-Boy?

  19. My dad came from a shit hole country Spanish immigrant made his own business and still this day ….as a salvadorian man he has done hood his not how trump portrays Salvador

  20. This is so incredibly dope. We forget sometimes that black people paid taxes at the same rates as everyone else for decades after slavery and they were handed the scraps after the white/other population. I wish I wasn't born during such a illusionary sweet spot in history because I would have loved to break barriers in similar ways.

  21. America probably just said,” Well, that’s another dead team of astronauts.”
    God bless him, and his family members

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