• Heidimarie Stefanyshyn-Piper is a US Navy Captain and NASA Astronaut. Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper has logged 27 days in space and more than 33 hours of space walks during two space shuttle missions. Learn more about Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper at NASA's Astronaut Biography page. BVMS logo floating aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor in November 2008        

    Kristine Stefanyshyn is an 8th grade Language Arts/Social Studies teacher and sister-in-law to Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper. Mrs. Stefanyshyn has logged 1,439 days in the classroom at Bella Vista Middle School and has spent over 150 hours grading papers this year! Learn more about Mrs. Stefanyshyn at her class web page.

    During each of her shuttle missions, Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper has carried one of Bella Vista's logos with her and photographed it while aboard the shuttle. This picture is of Bella Vista's Logo from inside the Space Shuttle Atlantis looking down on Earth. Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper took this picture while on mission, STS 115, which was from September 9, 2006 to September 21, 2006. She completed two spacewalks while on this mission.

    During November 2008, Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper was a crew member aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour (Mission STS-126).

    Captain Stefanshyn-Piper addresses students at Bella Vista Middle School STS-126 Endeavour (November 14-30, 2008) launched at night from the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, and returned to land at Edwards Air Force Base, California. It was NASA's 4th shuttle flight in 2008 and the 27th Shuttle/Station assembly mission. Highlights of the almost 16-day mission included expanding the living quarters of the space station to eventually house 6 member crews by delivering a new bathroom, kitchenette, two bedrooms, an exercise machine, and a water recycling system. The crew also completed 4 spacewalks to repair the damaged Starboard Solar Alpha Rotary Joint (SARJ), lubricate the Port SARJ, install an external camera group and a GPS Antenna on the Japanese Logistic Module. Stefanyshyn-Piper was the lead space walker and performed 3 of the spacewalks. STS-126 also delivered a new resident to the station, replacing Greg Chamitoff, Expedition 17-18 with Sandy Magnus, Expedition 18. STS-126 returned to Earth after completing 250 orbits in over 6.6 million miles.

    In February 2009, Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper visited Bella Vista. While here, she addressed our 8th grade class for about one hour. During the assembly, Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper shared a video from mission STS-126 including footage of her exciting space walk. At the conclusion of the videos, students had the opportunity to ask questions about the mission and her space walk.

    At the conclusion of her presentation, Capt. Stefanyshyn-Piper presented Assistant Principal Tapie with a new photo of our logo in space along with official documentation verifying that the plaque was aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour.