NASA's Bradford Smith, tour guide for Voyager missions, dies

Published: Jul. 7, 2018 at 1:47 PM CDT
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Bradford Smith, a NASA astronomer who interpreted the stunning images beamed back from Voyager missions, has died.

Smith's wife, Diane McGregor, says he died on Tuesday at his home in Santa Fe, New Mexico, of complications from myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune disorder. He was 86.

Smith headed the NASA team that interpreted pictures taken by Voyager space probes in 1977 as they passed Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune and presented them to the public. He was a retired research astronomer at the University of Hawaii in Manoa.

Known for his dry humor, he once quipped at a press conference showing a multi-colored, pockmarked moon of Jupiter, "I've seen better looking pizzas than this."

He is survived by McGregor, his wife of 34 years, three children, five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.