Ilan Ramon Israel’s Space Hero

Back to Story Central
Back to Parent Guides

Ilan Ramon: Israel's Space HeroWhat the Book is About:

Famous Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon represented Jews all over the world when he joined the crew of the Space Shuttle Columbia. This is the story of how he grew up to become Israel’s foremost astronaut, from his childhood in Beersheva, through his bar mitzvah following the Six-Day War, to his army service as a pilot and his training as an astronaut. This is an inspiring biography about an Israeli hero. 

Jewish Content and Values

Ilan Ramon is a national Israeli hero. Because he wanted to represent all Jews, Ilan decided that he would eat only kosher food on his space flight. He carried many mementoes with Jewish significance into space: artwork from a young teenager who died in the Holocaust, a tiny Torah from the Holocaust, an Israeli flag, a Kiddush cup, and a miniature Bible

Positive Role Models

Ilan Ramon was determined to succeed at any challenge. Despite being injured in a plane crash, he graduated with honors from his flight course. He courageously took on dangerous missions for the honor and safety of Israel. He was proud to represent Israel in space and to become the first Israeli astronaut.

Content Advisory

Ilan Ramon’s story is very inspirational, but also sad. The Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated on re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere, killing all seven people on board. People all around the world wept at the loss of Columbia, but of course the loss was greatest for the families of the astronauts. This tragic accident is sensitively described for young readers.

Talk it Over

When a colleague from the Israeli Air Force called Ilan Ramon to ask him if he wanted to be an astronaut, Ilan thought he was joking. He hadn’t even dreamed of becoming an astronaut because Israel didn’t even have a space program! What do you want to be when you grow up?

More For You

On February 1, 2003, the space shuttle Columbia exploded as it attempted re-entry after 16 days in space, killing Ilan Ramon and the six other crew members. Unfortunately, that was not the only tragedy to befall the Ramon family. Six year later, Ilan’s eldest son, Assaf, an IDF fighter pilot, was killed when his F16 plane crashed during a training accident. In a national outpouring of grief, all of Israel mourned along with his family. Ramon’s widow, Rona, founded the Ramon Foundation in their memories. 

Click for the BBB Business Review located Agawam, MA