DENVER (CBS4) — When humanity first touches down on Mars, it will have the spirit of a Colorado hero to greet it. The Perseverance rover carried the name of Kendrick Castillo, who was killed while trying to stop a shooter at STEM School Highlands Ranch in May 2019.
Castillo was a science and robotics fanatic — and this mission is a huge step toward sending humans to Mars.READ MORE: Kendrick Castillo Could Be Featured In National Garden Of American Heroes
His father, John Castillo, thanked NASA and called it a “wonderful day.”
“We will know that Kendrick’s name is somewhere on the Rover getting ready to discover the red planet,” John Castillo wrote on Facebook.
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— NASA's Perseverance Mars Rover (@NASAPersevere) February 18, 2021
NASA sent the Castillos a letter in the month following Kendrick’s death. It read, in part, “Kendrick’s extraordinary heroism and selflessness changed lives and saved lives. That spirit survives him. I would like to add his name to the list being sent to Mars next year aboard our Mars 2020 rover as a small token of our admiration for his commitment to what we do at NASA.”