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Astronaut Richard H. Truly, pilot of the Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-2 and Commander of Shuttle Challenger on mission STS-8, became NASA's eighth Administrator on July 1, 1989. One day earlier he concluded a 30 year Naval career retiring as a Vice Admiral. He was the first astronaut to head the nation's civilian space agency. Truly became Deputy Associate Administrator for Space Flight on February 20, 1986. In this position, he led the painstaking rebuilding of the Space Shuttle program less than one month after the Challenger disaster. This was highlighted by the much heralded 'Return to Flight' on September 29, 1988 with the launch of Shuttle Discovery, 32 months after Challenger's final flight. On February 12th, 1992 Richard Truly resigned as NASA Administrator at the request of President George Bush.