Kalpna Chawla, a hero the world will always be proud of. Today we commemorate her on the 16th death anniversary. Though the day brings memories we hate, but as everyone we would love to remember her story as the symbol of strength, courage and perseverance.

Kalpana Chawla was born in the city of Karnal, Haryana on March 17, 1962. She was a lover of poetry, dancing, cycling and running. She completed her bachelors in Aeronautical Engineering from Punjab University and later moved to Texas to pursue Masters in Aerospace Engineering the from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Kalpana Chawla then studied further and finished her second masters and Ph.D. from the University of Colorado Boulder. She joined NASA 1988.

She always held a fascination for airplanes and would draw airplanes in her free time when she was a child. She later went on to become a Certificated Flight Instructor when she was working in NASA.

She went on her first space mission in 1997 in Space Shuttle Columbia flight STS-87. She was the first woman of Indian origin to go to space. Kalpana Chawla traveled over 10.4 million miles and logged over 472 hours.  It was on her second mission she faced the disheartening tragedy and died along with her six crew members in Space Shuttle Columbia STS-107

Twitteratis pay their tribute to the woman who made us all proud :

Also read: 70th Republic Day: All you need to know about the ceremony

Kalpana Chawla said “The journey matter as much as the goal” and we could not agree more with these wise words.