- Associated Press - Friday, July 8, 2011

CAPE CANAVERAL, FLA. (AP) - One thing about the end of space shuttle flight: Everyone has an opinion. A look at some of the views from those close to the space program:

“The shuttle is always going to be a reflection of what a great nation can do when it dares to be bold and commits to follow through.”

_Atlantis commander Christopher Ferguson just before launch.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do. We’ve got another program that we’ve got to get under way. … We know what we’re doing. We know how to get there. We’ve just got to convince everybody else that we know what we’re doing.”

_NASA Administrator Charles Bolden to workers after liftoff.

“Those vehicles, in my opinion, could fly for another 30 years and could be flown safely.”

_Robert Crippen, pilot of the first space shuttle flight.

NASA doesn’t have a story right now. Exploration is nothing if not the articulation of a great story.”

_ Astronaut John Grunsfeld, who helped repair the Hubble Space Telescope three times.

“I think the shuttle program is ending exactly as it should. We built the International Space Station… and we finished really strong.”

_Mike Moses, chairman of the mission management team for liftoff.

“People wanted to get rid of the space shuttle and so they have done so. They have done so in condemning it in many different ways, all of which in my opinion were false.”

_Christopher Kraft, founder of Mission Control.

“There is no embarrassment in setting the bar impossibly high and then failing to clear it. What matters is that we strived mightily to do so.”

_Astronaut Duane Carey.

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