NASA bumps astronaut off space station flight in rare move

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — NASA has bumped an astronaut off an upcoming spaceflight, a rare move for the space agency so close to launch.

Astronaut Jeanette Epps was supposed to rocket away in early June, and would have been the first African-American to live on the International Space Station.

NASA announced late Thursday that it was pulling Epps off the mission but didn’t disclose why. Astronauts have been removed from missions in the past, mostly for health reasons.


Epps, an engineer who has been training in Russia for the flight, will be considered for future missions. She has been replaced by her backup, Serena Aunon-Chancellor, a doctor.