Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center
Houston, Texas 77058
After A-4 training, he made two Vietnam deployments aboard the USS ENTERPRISE with Attack Squadron 113. He served as a flight instructor in Attack Squadron 125 at Naval Air Station Lemoore, California, for 2 years and transitioned to A-7 aircraft. He made two additional Vietnam deployments aboard the USS ENTERPRISE with CVW-14 staff and Attack Squadron 97. Williams completed a total of 330 combat missions.
In 1973, Williams attended the Armed Forces Staff College. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School at Patuxent River, Maryland, in June 1974, and was assigned to the Naval Air Test Center's Carrier Suitability Branch of Flight Test Division. From August 1976 to June 1977, following reorganization of the Naval Air Test Center, he was head of the Carrier Systems Branch, Strike Aircraft Test Directorate. He reported next for A-7 refresher training and was assigned to Attack Squadron 94 when selected by NASA.
He has logged more than 6,000 hours flying time, which includes 5,700 hours in jets and 745 carrier landings.
Williams was pilot for STS-51D, the fourth flight of Discovery and the sixteenth Shuttle mission. Launch was from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on April 12, 1985. The crew deployed ANIK-C for Telesat of Canada, and Syncom IV-3 for the U.S. Navy. A malfunction in the Syncom spacecraft resulted in the first unscheduled EVA, rendezvous and proximity operations for the Space Shuttle in an attempt to activate the satellite. Additionally the 51D crew conducted several medical experiments, two student experiments, activated two Getaway Specials and filmed experiments with toys in space. After 168 hours of orbital operations, and 109 orbits of the earth, Discovery landed on Runway 33 at the Kennedy Space Center on April 19, 1985.
From July 1985 through August 1986, Williams was the Deputy Chief of the Aircraft Operations Division at the Johnson Space Center. Williams also served as Chief of the Mission Support Branch within the Astronaut Office.
On his second space flight, Williams commanded STS-34. Atlantis launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on October 18, 1989, and landed at Edwards Air Force Base, California, on October 23, 1989. During the mission the crew successfully deployed the Galileo spacecraft, starting its journey to explore Jupiter, operated the Shuttle Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet Instrument (SSBUV) to map atmospheric ozone, and performed numerous secondary experiments involving radiation measurements, polymer morphology, lightning research, microgravity effects on plants, and a student experiment on ice crystal growth in space. Mission duration was 79 orbits of the earth, and logged Captain Williams an additional 119 hours and 41 minutes in space.
OCTOBER 1989 ARCHIVAL BIOGRAPHY