Monday, July 30, 2007

The conquest of space

One of the people injured in last week's blast at Scaled Composites is a University of Michigan alumnus and a guy I know personally. Jason Kramb (now confirmed on Scaled's own website) is in serious condition after being knocked back 25 feet by the tank explosion.

Kramb played trombone in the MMB from 1996-2000, which was before my time, but I met and got to know him from his presence at various MMB events over the years. He worked for Scaled Composites at the time they won the X-Prize with SpaceShipOne. Each employee got a packet to fill with items they wanted to send to space and back, and Kramb is responsible for sending the first trombone mouthpiece into space.

This was forwarded from his mom:

"He had turned his head to watch the plume from the rocket and so his left side of the face has the most injuries while the right is ok. He has several cuts with lots of stitches. A piece of the carbon fiber went through his lip and broke a tooth. The side of his left nostril was cut so it flapped back...they repaired that also. He has a very severe injury on his left thigh from knee to groin that was probably from the force of the blast. It damaged the skin and underlying tissue. He had surgery on Thursday to debride...some areas it is down to the muscle. Also has a smaller one on the shin. He is going to surgery on Monday to skin graft the area.

Because the rocket is made of carbon fiber he had hundreds of pieces(big and small) removed in surgery and we are finding more daily...I sit and pick them out with tweezers! Just think of lots and lots of slivers.

On top of all that, he witnessed an explosion that killed three of his co-workers and critically injured his roommate. Scary stuff. Best wishes to Kramb, and everyone else involved, on a speedy and full recovery.

1 comment:

Agatha said...

I only know Kramb from seeing him occasionally at prog or other band/trombone-related gathering, but I still pray for him and his co-workers. I remember seeing the space mouthpiece at one prog and being in semi-awe of it.