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Gov. DeWine honors Guion Bluford, first African American astronaut to fly in space

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is honoring Col. Guion Bluford on Thursday morning for his lifetime achievements for the state and country.
Col. Guion Bluford (WBNS-10TV)

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine honored Col. Guion Bluford Thursday morning for his lifetime achievements for the state and country.

Bluford, who lives Westlake, Ohio, flew 144 combat missions in South Vietnam as a pilot with the United States Air Force. He also made history as the first African American astronaut to fly in space in 1983.

Bluford was presented with the Ohio Distinguished Service Medal, which is Ohio's highest non-combat decoration for service.

"Your commitment and dedication over the course of your career in aviation are a tremendous inspiration to generations of Ohioans," said Governor DeWine during the medal presentation at the Ohio Statehouse today. "As NASA prepares for future missions to space, the next generation of astronauts will be looking to follow in your footsteps."