When you live to see almost 100 years of life you have experienced a lot. Those who are 100 today have lived through the invention of television, World War II, the great depression, the birth of rock and roll, the freedom of the sixties, the age of the internet, and much much more. One woman who recently turned 96 had a dream for many of these years and after a lot of work, she finally achieved it. She said it was the greatest moment of her life. She managed to make contact with someone in outer space. A rare moment that would be special for anyone but meant a lot more to this woman. Read on to find out more.
Jean Moffatt is 96 years old. She has lived in Canada for her entire life and seen the world change so much that it is likely nothing could still surprise her. Jean has always been fond of the radio and for many years she has been on her very own traditional radio set (sometimes referred to as ham radio) talking to people around the world. Jean says that she has talked to people from every imaginable destination. The traditional radio works based on satellites so it can ping people from all over the world and Moffatt has been lucky enough to talk to people in the Arctic and Antarctic and nearly everywhere in-between. This may not sound so incredible in the age of the internet when you can not only share a voice call but you could like video call someone or play online games with someone in the far reaches of the world, but Jean Moffatt is 96 years old and for much of her life the idea of talking to someone outside your home town was fanciful.
While she loved talking to people all over the world she had a dream that one day she would be able to talk to someone in space. This was likely a dream that she never really thought possible. To talk to someone in space they would have needed another ham radio. Systems that were quite large and relied on satellites pointing towards Earth. Yet as time went on and technology advanced Jean Moffatt’s dream never changed but the technology did. What one seemed the fanciful idea of a young girl soon became a very possible reality.
At the age of 96, Moffatt started to try and make this dream a reality. She contacted space agencies around the world with her wish. Finally, after one particular email with NASA and about three months of waiting and organizing, it happened. Her ham radio was used to make contact with a space station in Northern Itay that patched her through to the International Space Station. Jean Moffatt spoke to Commander Luca Parmitano while he was in space.
For many of her later years, Jean volunteered at the Science Centre and helped educate people on how to use ham radio and what it was used for throughout history. Another volunteer coordinator was chatting with her one day when she mentioned her dream of speaking to an astronaut. Together they made it happen and Jean Moffatt realized her dream.
This story shows how long life can be. Jean Moffatt lived long enough to see some incredible changes throughout history but also long enough to see things that she thought were an insane dream become a very possible reality. If you know someone who dreams of speaking to an astronaut this shows how possible it is. If you know someone who has dreams a little more unrealistic than that, don’t lose hope, it may just take time.