|Atlantis STS-135 crew with International Space Station astronauts. They are holding the flag that flew on STS-001 in 1981. Photo courtesy NASA.|
The Atlantis shuttle astronauts gave the crew of the International Space Station a very special gift today. They gave them a very special American flag.
This flag flew aboard the very first shuttle flight. It flew aboard mission STS-001, on shuttle Columbia in 1981. Atlantis is the last shuttle mission, STS-135.
The astronauts will keep this special American flag on the International Space Station. Hopefully, they will give it away again one day soon. They have been asked to give it to the next astronauts that launch from the United States.
When Atlantis lands, we will have no more shuttle flights. America will have no spacecraft to launch into space. Let's hope that we fly again VERY SOON!