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Dr. Franklin Chang-Diaz
Dr. Franklin Chang-Díaz
Dr. Franklin Chang-Diaz spent more than 1,600 hours in space!

Franklin Chang-Díaz was born in San Jose, Costa Rica on April 5, 1950. His grandfather named him for American President Franklin D. Roosevelt. As a boy Franklin dreamed of moving to the United States to become an astronaut. He worked very hard to make his dream come true. Franklin arrived in the United States in 1968. He could not speak English and had only fifty dollars in his pocket. Franklin went to school and studied very hard. By the end of the first year, he had earned a full college scholarship. Franklin Chang-Díaz received a BS degree in mechanical engineering in 1973. He went on to earn a Ph.D. in applied plasma physics in 1977. Dr. Chang-Díaz became an astronaut in 1981. After seven space missions, he retired from NASA in 2005.

Dr. Chang-Díaz and his wife have four children. Dr. Chang-Díaz likes to hunt, fish, and go underwater diving in his spare time.

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A Question

Why couldn't Franklin Chang-Díaz speak English when he first came to the United States?

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