As the Space Shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Launch Pad 39A on Mission STS-88, several fish believed to be mullet (at center left) "launch" themselves out of the water from one of the waterways around the pad. Liftoff of the first U.S. mission dedicated to the assembly of the International Space Station was at 3:35:34 a.m. EST on Dec. 4. During the nearly 12-day mission, the six-member crew will mate in space the first two elements of the International Space Station -- the already-orbiting Zarya control module with the Unity connecting module carried by Endeavour. Crew members are Commander Robert D. Cabana, Pilot Frederick W. "Rick" Sturckow, and Mission Specialists Nancy J. Currie, Jerry L. Ross, James H. Newman and Sergei Konstantinovich Krikalev, a Russian cosmonaut. This was the second launch attempt for STS-88. The first one on Dec. 3 was scrubbed when launch controllers, following an assessment of a suspect hydraulic system, were unable to resume the countdown clock in time to launch within the remaining launch window. (Photo Release Date: 12/04/98 )
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