Willie McCool marathon honors local astronaut

Lubbock runners took part in the Willie McCool Memorial Run on Saturday morning.

Runners could participate in either the half-marathon or the 5K.

The marathon is held in honor of the local astronaut who tragically lost his life in 2003.

Willie McCool was a runner at Coronado High School, which helped prepare him for the Naval Academy.

He later became a US Navy Commander, NASA astronaut and the pilot of space shuttle Columbia.

He died while in flight, re-entering into the Earth's atmosphere.

The West Texas Endurance Running Club has established a student scholarship in McCool's name.

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