Brian Welch

Died about 1 month after this interview Nov 24, 2000
of a "heart attack" at the young age of 42.
Was he not convincing enough?
Did he have 2nd thoughts about lying about the Moon landing?

Bob Jacobs
Headquarters, Washington, DC                            November 27, 2000
(Phone: 202/358-1600)

RELEASE:  00-187


     Brian D. Welch, a veteran public affairs officer for the space agency and 
NASA's Director of Media Services, died Friday, Nov. 24, after suffering a heart 
attack. He was 42.

"All of us at NASA are stunned and saddened by this tragic loss," said NASA 
Administrator Daniel S. Goldin. "Brian's love and enthusiasm for space flight 
and exploration was infectious. He approached his job with a passion and a purpose 
and truly embodied the spirit of this agency."

As Director of Media Services, Welch led many of the agency's public outreach 
efforts. He was responsible for overall agency news operations, NASA Television 
and the agency's Internet efforts.

Welch began his NASA career as a public affairs cooperative education student at 
the Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA, in 1979. In 1981, he moved to the 
Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX, to become editor of the Center newspaper, the 
Space News Roundup.

In 1984, Welch became a public affairs mission commentator, providing real-time 
descriptions from the Mission Control Center during Space Shuttle flights. He 
also served as Deputy News Chief at the center, manager of the JSC mission 
commentary team and newsroom manager during Shuttle flights. He served ten-
months at NASA Headquarters as speechwriter for Administrator Goldin, before 
being appointed Chief of News and Information in 1994. Welch was named Director 
of Media Services in 1998.

"His passing is a tremendous loss for all of us," said Peggy Wilhide, Associate 
Administrator for the Office of NASA Public Affairs. "Our thoughts and prayers 
go out to Brian's family, his many friends, as well as the many members of his 
extended family here at NASA."

Welch was a graduate of Murray State University, Murray, KY, and a native of 
Fulton, KY. His mother, one brother and one sister survive him. 

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