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Essential Hospital Alum Joins NASA Expedition

Staff at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC), in Minneapolis, are eagerly anticipating the July 22 launch of NASA’s Expedition 44/45. Kjell Lindgren, MD, who served as chief resident of the hospital’s emergency department, is the mission’s flight engineer.

Expedition 44/45 will carry Lindgren, along with five other astronauts, to the International Space Station (ISS). The mission was rescheduled from its original launch date of May 25 due to the investigation of a cargo spacecraft’s failure to reach the ISS in April.

Douglas Brunette, MD, chief of emergency medicine at HCMC and Lindgren’s supervisor during his residency, will travel to Kazakhstan to watch the launch. “I feel so honored that Kjell asked me to be there,” Brunette said. “Of course it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for me, but to see my former resident – whom I now consider a friend and colleague – fulfill his dreams of being an astronaut, it’s just so exciting.”

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