Dr. Ronald E. McNair Playground
Lexington Ave. bet. E. 122 St. and 123 St.
Directions via Google Maps
This park honors astronaut Dr. Ronald Erwin McNair (1950-1986) who died in the Challenger space shuttle tragedy on January 28, 1986. Dr. McNair was a physicist, karate instructor, performing jazz saxophonist, husband, and father.
Born in Lake City, South Carolina on October 21, 1950, McNair graduated from North Carolina A&T State University and received his Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1976. NASA selected him as an astronaut candidate in 1978. His first and only complete space mission began on February 3, 1984. This was the first mission to use the space arm, which McNair operated. His second mission lasted only 73 seconds, before the shuttle exploded in the upper atmosphere, above the Atlantic Ocean, killing all seven on board.