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Page last updated at 14:05 GMT, Tuesday, 19 August 2008 15:05 UK

Homer's odyssey - First Person

In 1957 the launch of the first satellite, Sputnik, heralded the start of the space age.

Its political and scientific shockwaves were felt everywhere, including in West Virginia where 14-year-old Homer Hickam - who grew up to be a Nasa engineer and best-selling writer - was staring into the sky.


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