In Photos: Andrew Feustel, NASA’s American Astronaut, Visiting Brno, Czech Republic, to Talk about his Space Adventures

Andrew Feustel, an American geophysicist and astronaut with Czech ancestry who is known for bringing various symbols of the Czech culture into orbit, is in the city of Brno. His visit is a part of his Czech Tour organized by the Czech Academy of Science, which includes stops in Prague, Olomouc, and Ostrava. Photo credit: Casadei Graphics.

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Brno, Apr 12 (BD) – “Imagine, that you have been sent on a business trip for seven months, and it was not on this planet,” head of the Brno Observatory Jiří Dušek opened today’s press conference with Andrew Feustel and his wife at Brno Municipality.  

Working with NASA since the year 2000, Andrew Feustel, along with his wife, Indira Devi Bhatnagar of Indo-Czech origin, are in Brno today – April 12. In the afternoon, Feustel met with Markéta Vaňková, the mayor of Brno. Later on today, Feustel will speak at the Brno Observatory, where he will share his experience with space travels. Feustel promised to share personal stories, experiences and adventures with the Brno audience. Andrew Feustel is very popular in the Czech Republic – the tickets for his presentation were sold out in mere 15 minutes after their release!

Feustel’s wife Indira – whose mother comes originally from Znojmo in South Moravia – has expressed her fondness of the Czech Republic, and appealed on treating the Earth and our land with respect.

“I love Czech Republic, I love this country, it is very beautiful here. I like returning here, and I would like to have a place to stay here also in the future,” she said, with a spark of humour in perfect Czech. She also mentioned that Brno has a special place in her and her husband’s hearths. Feustel has photographed racetracks from space, with Brno’s Masaryk Circuit being one of them.

Mayor Vaňková said she was very delighted to meet with the couple. She described that they talked about their special connection to the Czech Republic and Brno, and its importance in the field of science. Feustel and his wife in return complimented the mayor’s English.

In Feustel’s 2018 trip to space, he brought a replica of “Moon Landscape” – a drawing made by a Jewish Czech child who was incarcerated in Terezin during World War 2. The drawing illustrated how the child believed the Earth would look like, from the perspective of a person on the moon.

Before that, in 2011, Feustel also took a stuffed toy of Little Mole, “Krtek” – which is a favourite Czech cartoon character, created by Zdeněk Miler; and in 2009, Feustel brought a copy of Jan Neruda’s book of poems, “Cosmic Songs” by the 19th century Czech writer.

In total, Andrew Feustel spent 226 days orbiting in space, and 6 hours 48 minutes in free space. He and his wife Indira Devi Bhatnagar have two children.

Feustel’s Czech tour has been organized by the Czech Academy of Science. Kateřina Sobotková and Josef Lazar of the Czech Academy of Science were also present at the press conference today. “Thank you for the opportunity to tour this country and talk about science,” the astronaut concluded his speech with his favorite subject.

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