His wife, former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, was shot in a 2011 assassination attempt, and the couple founded the group Americans for Responsible Solutions in 2013, following the Sandy Hook mass shooting, to support gun safety legislation.
- 01 What are you reading?
I’m in the middle of The Martian [by Andy Weir] even though I’ve seen
- 02 How often do you travel?
I traveled 216 days last year.
- 03 What’s your favorite city?
New York. In New York, you’re not missing anything.
- 04 Do you ﬂy private or commercial?
Commercial—usually American Airlines because it’s the most convenient out of Tucson [where he lives].
- 05 What do you never travel without?
My iPad, laptop and Bose noise-canceling headphones.
- 06 What is the worst mistake you’ve made?
Having flown in space four times and commanded the space shuttle, it’s hard to say I’ve made a major mistake. That doesn’t mean that I made all the right decisions, either. I might’ve been lucky.
- 07 Do you have a favorite space shuttle?
Endeavour. It’s the space shuttle I flew on my first flight and my last flight, which was also the last flight of Endeavour.
- 08 What is your favorite film?
A long-standing favorite is Rocky. It’s the classic underdog story.
- 09 What are you watching on TV?
I like Game of Thrones. Recently I started watching The Big Bang Theory.
- 10 Beer, wine or spirits?
I drink a little beer and wine. I like a good cabernet, like a Jordan or a Canis. With beer, I’m good with a Budweiser.
- 11 What watch do you wear?
I really like the new Breitling Emergency. It communicates with the SARSAT [Search and Rescue Satellite] network. If you crash an airplane or are out on a sailboat and need to be rescued, this watch has its own emergency personal locator beacon that communicates with a satellite. [Kelly is a Breitling ambassador.]
- 12 Favorite restaurant?
Mastro’s Steakhouse. They’re in multiple cities I travel to frequently, so I don’t have to go searching for a good restaurant.
- 13 What do you drive?
My wife Gabby got me a Corvette for my 50th birthday. It’s a 2014 C7 Corvette white convertible. It’s your typical Apollo-era astronaut car.
- 14 Do you race it?
There’s a track that I drive on, but I’ve spun around and off the track before—I don’t want to do that in my own car.
- 15 What keeps you up at night?
I’m a pretty good sleeper. But like any parent, I worry about my kids even when there’s nothing to worry about.
- 16 What’s your worst habit?
Running. Not sharing enough information with my mother-in-law.
- 17 What the best advice you’ve ever received?
Always take care of your people.
- 18 Favorite philanthropy?
The organization Gabby and I run, Americans for Responsible Solutions. I’m a gun owner. I’ve got six or seven guns.
- 19 Favorite gun?
My 9mm Glock. When I was in my 20s and flying for the Navy, it was the gun I flew into combat with.
- 20 How would you like to be remembered?
As somebody who made a difference in regard to exploration, science and STEM education, and with regard to how violence affects our communities.
This article originally appeared in the April/May 2016 issue of Worth.