David M. Brown, MD


David McDowell Brown, MD, a Captain in the United States Navy, was born on April 16, 1956 in Arlington, Virginia. He enjoyed flying and bicycle touring, and was a four year collegiate varsity gymnast. While in college he performed in the Circus Kingdom as an acrobat, 7 foot unicyclist and stilt walker.

Brown and his crewmates, Rick D. Husband, William C. McCool, Michael P. Anderson, Kalpana Chawla, Laurel B. Clark, and Ilan Ramon, died on Feb. 1, 2003 as Columbia broke up over Texas during re-entry, about 16 minutes before landing.

NASA Biography

Space Flights:

  • Mission Specialist 1, STS-107, Columbia, January 16-Feburary 1, 2003

Total Hours in Space: 382+

Astronaut Group: 16-August 12, 1996

Degrees: BS, biology, College of William and Mary, 1978, doctorate in medicine, Eastern Virginia Medical School, 1982. He performed his internship in South Carolina and went to the U.S. Navy flight surgeon school in 1984.

Military Service & Awards: Brown joined the Navy after his internship at the Medical University of South Carolina. Upon completion of flight surgeon training in 1984, he reported to the Navy Branch Hospital in Adak, Alaska, as Director of Medical Services. He was then assigned to Carrier Airwing Fifteen which deployed aboard the USS Carl Vinson in the western Pacific. In 1988, he was the only flight surgeon in a ten year period to be chosen for pilot training. He was ultimately designated a naval aviator in 1990 in Beeville, Texas, ranking number one in his class. Navy Operational Flight Surgeon of the Year in 1986, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Achievement Medal.

STS-107 crew portrait

Interred at Arlington National Cemetery: March 12, 2003

Section: 46
Grave: 1180-3
Grid: O-23/24

How to locate: Located just behind the Columbia memorial when facing it. This is to the west of the Memorial Amphitheater, near the mast of the U.S.S. Maine.