39 min

Life’s Tough, but Richard Garriott is TOUGHER, the first person to visit Space, both Poles, and the lowest physical point on the Planet; Part 1 Life's Tough - Explorers Are TOUGHER

    • Documentary

The environment that parents create for their children is what becomes normal for them. And Richard Garriott's normal was a little different than most kids. He grew up next to the Johnson Space Center, the Houston-based outpost of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and most of his neighbors were astronauts, contractors and engineers at NASA. His father was a NASA astronaut and while other families had magazines, bills and schoolbooks lying around, in Garriott's household, space artifacts and hardware cluttered the living spaces. It wasn’t until later in life that Garriott realized other kids didn’t dream of space travel. 
"While growing up, there were things that, in retrospect, were truly amazing. But at the time, it not only seemed normal for our family, but for most families in the neighborhood." Garriott says.
In this fascinating conversation with Richard Wiese, Garriott shares about what it was like growing up as the son of a NASA astronaut and how, at 13-years old, he had his childhood dreams of becoming an astronaut dashed after a failed eye exam. But he never fully gave up on his dream, saying “NASA doesn’t hold the keys to space!”
During his freshman year of high school, Garriott convinced the school to let him create a self-directed course in programming, in which he created fantasy computer games on the school’s teletype machine. He later estimated that he wrote nearly 30 computer fantasy games during high school. He went on to create the game Akalabeth, (the first published computer role playing game) and signed a deal with California Pacific Computer Company receiving three times his father's NASA salary as a teenager. His successful gaming career has funded his space travel and exploration.
In February 2021, Garriott traveled to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest oceanic trench on the planet, which made him the only person in the world to have visited space, both poles, and the lowest physical point on the planet. He also played a founding role in starting the Challenger Center for Space Science Education. To learn more about Richard Garriott, visit www.richardgarriott.com. Join us for part 2 of Life’s Tough: Richard Garriott is TOUGHER! at https://www.lifestough.com/podcast/explorers/.
Host Richard Wiese is an American explorer and author of the guidebook, Born to Explore: How to Be a Backyard Adventurer. He became the youngest person to become president of the exclusive Explorers Club in 2002. Richard is also Executive Producer and Host of the PBS weekly television series Born to Explore with Richard Wiese.

The environment that parents create for their children is what becomes normal for them. And Richard Garriott's normal was a little different than most kids. He grew up next to the Johnson Space Center, the Houston-based outpost of National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and most of his neighbors were astronauts, contractors and engineers at NASA. His father was a NASA astronaut and while other families had magazines, bills and schoolbooks lying around, in Garriott's household, space artifacts and hardware cluttered the living spaces. It wasn’t until later in life that Garriott realized other kids didn’t dream of space travel. 
"While growing up, there were things that, in retrospect, were truly amazing. But at the time, it not only seemed normal for our family, but for most families in the neighborhood." Garriott says.
In this fascinating conversation with Richard Wiese, Garriott shares about what it was like growing up as the son of a NASA astronaut and how, at 13-years old, he had his childhood dreams of becoming an astronaut dashed after a failed eye exam. But he never fully gave up on his dream, saying “NASA doesn’t hold the keys to space!”
During his freshman year of high school, Garriott convinced the school to let him create a self-directed course in programming, in which he created fantasy computer games on the school’s teletype machine. He later estimated that he wrote nearly 30 computer fantasy games during high school. He went on to create the game Akalabeth, (the first published computer role playing game) and signed a deal with California Pacific Computer Company receiving three times his father's NASA salary as a teenager. His successful gaming career has funded his space travel and exploration.
In February 2021, Garriott traveled to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest oceanic trench on the planet, which made him the only person in the world to have visited space, both poles, and the lowest physical point on the planet. He also played a founding role in starting the Challenger Center for Space Science Education. To learn more about Richard Garriott, visit www.richardgarriott.com. Join us for part 2 of Life’s Tough: Richard Garriott is TOUGHER! at https://www.lifestough.com/podcast/explorers/.
Host Richard Wiese is an American explorer and author of the guidebook, Born to Explore: How to Be a Backyard Adventurer. He became the youngest person to become president of the exclusive Explorers Club in 2002. Richard is also Executive Producer and Host of the PBS weekly television series Born to Explore with Richard Wiese.

39 min