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Space Bat, we hardly knew ye by beavotron Space Bat, we hardly knew ye by beavotron
On a cool spring eve March 15th, 2009 a bat, crippled and wistful, clung to the Space Shuttle Discovery as it was thrust toward the great beyond. Goodbye and godspeed, my magnificent Space-bat.

At some point during the countdown, Space-bat—a Free-Tailed Chiroptera—was spotted latched to the foam of the external fuel tank, occasionally moving but never letting go. Wildlife experts deduced that he had injured his wing and shoulder, leaving him with little chance of survival.

He remained on the tank until launch. NASA's cold report?

"The animal likely perished quickly during Discovery's climb into orbit."

But here's how it should have read:
"Bereft of his ability to fly and with nowhere to go, a courageous bat climbed aboard our Discovery with stars in his weak little eyes. The launch commenced, and Spacebat trembled as his frail mammalian body was gently pushed skyward. For the last time, he felt the primal joy of flight; for the first, the indescribable feeling of ascending toward his dream—a place far away from piercing screeches and crowded caves, stretching forever into fathomless blackness."

Whether he was consumed in the exhaust flames or frozen solid in the stratosphere is of no concern. We know that Space-bat died, but his dream will live on in all of us.


awesome editorial snippet provided by qmarkman
you can read NASA's report on the little guy here:
[link]
Add a Comment:
 
:iconcartoonking1:
cartoonking1 Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2015
You made me cry. ;~;
Reply
:iconchiminix:
Chiminix Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2014
:salute:  this bat is a hero
Reply
:iconssaduka18:
SSADUKA18 Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2013
On the bright side, he's in a better place now...
Reply
:iconanaemicmosquito:
anaemicmosquito Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2013
Space Bat: The hero we needed whom we did not deserve.
Reply
:iconjerricho111:
jerricho111 Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
RIP space bat
Reply
:iconenterprise4life:
Enterprise4life Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Awwww.... The little guy was so brave....
Reply
:iconsilverstar44:
Silverstar44 Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2011   Traditional Artist
:iconsadplz: This is so sad!!!! -weeps-

Cute bat, though! -sniff-

May Spacebat live in all of us... -weeps-
Reply
:iconchlove-art:
chlove-art Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
SO. CUTE.
I'm sure the little bat thanks you with all its spiritual little heart :)
Reply
:iconchlove-art:
chlove-art Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2011  Professional Digital Artist
SO. CUTE.
I'm sure the little bat thanks you with all its spiritual little heart :)
Reply
:icondorkinabubble:
dorkinabubble Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011  Student General Artist
Oh my word how sad... :iconsadplz:
Reply
:iconloreleifan1:
loreleifan1 Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2011
good to know that someone wouldn't let the bat be forgotten...nice one man :-)
Reply
:iconbig-bad-wulf:
Big-Bad-Wulf Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2010
aw, your version of it is sweet. i wanna pay homage to space bat now X3
Reply
:iconwolfzant:
WolfZant Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010
NEVER
FORGET
Reply
:iconadscomics:
adscomics Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
this is real?
Reply
:icontrogdorboy:
trogdorboy Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
It brings a tear to my eye.
Reply
:iconadscomics:
adscomics Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
me too )':
Reply
:iconcrimson--fate:
Crimson--Fate Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2010
Rest in peace, you god of night.
Reply
:iconxxtehbagoxx:
xXTehBagoXx Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2010   Photographer
ik im a little late xD but it's never too late for spacebat :3
Reply
:iconxxtehbagoxx:
xXTehBagoXx Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2010   Photographer
Spacebat....aww...its tragic in a touching way <:3 but the pic takes the tragic away (It..RHYMES :D...The Oath to Spacebat)
Reply
:iconansemaru:
Ansemaru Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2010  Student Digital Artist
...m-my hero, Spacebat.
Reply
:iconkeaton-stoos:
keaton-stoos Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This picture is actually quite sad
Reply
:iconfangirl0:
Fangirl0 Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2010
Aw, it's so sad, but the picture is so cute.
I love your alternate version of the report on Space Bat, too.
Reply
:iconkassad86:
Kassad86 Featured By Owner Jan 16, 2010  Hobbyist Photographer
See you space bat :cry:
Reply
:iconbelfrybat:
BelfryBat Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Too cute! Heh, kinda sad, but your picture is very cute, nonetheless.
Reply
:iconvinare:
Vinare Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2009
Beautiful! :'( So sad but very touching! I love space. And bats!
Reply
:iconkandiross:
kandiross Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2009
Awww I miss him. =(
Reply
:icongreyofpta:
GreyOfPTA Featured By Owner May 25, 2009  Professional Filmographer
That story was very sad and I couldn't believe that that little guy made it that far up. The astronauts have to be strapped in to keep from rattled out of their seats. How a little batty hung onto styrofoam all the way up baffles me.
Your illustration is very adorable hits the right spot.
Reply
:iconeldepressio:
elDepressio Featured By Owner May 16, 2009
RIP good buddy, you've inspired us all to reach for grander stuff.

And, this is a very touching and awesome drawing. It makes me very misty eyed. And the high five is a very nice touch. I have no doubt the moon was very proud of Brian.

Excellent description as well.
Reply
:iconwillmeister42:
willmeister42 Featured By Owner May 10, 2009
:aww: :salute:
Reply
:iconeric727:
Eric727 Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2009  Hobbyist Artist
haha awesome! :D spacebat :p lol
Reply
:iconpinguino:
pinguino Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
awww i LOVE your spacebat!
Reply
:iconlightrail:
Lightrail Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
This is great! I love the texture and background, it keeps it from not looking too two-dimensional.
Reply
:iconronald-mack:
Ronald-MacK Featured By Owner Mar 24, 2009
This is absolutely adorable. Excellent work.
Reply
:iconzhaneel69:
Zhaneel69 Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2009
Lovely take on the tale. Very nice.
Reply
:iconzedbunny:
ZedBunny Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2009
That is so amazing!

I've read several reports on the clingy little spacebat, and just about every one has brought a bit of a tear to my eye. I know the bat (probably) wasn't trying to perform a feat of space-awesome, but the pictures and video clips make it hard not to anthropomorphise the critter. You've captured that so well here, too. His snuggly attachment to the shuttle and happy grin are perfect, and the high-five from the (moon/afterlife-thing/space-entity) really make the piece.

Great work!
Reply
:iconvolador-n7:
Volador-N7 Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
He didn't die. He mutated into a giant monster due to the radiation in the atmosphere. Now he travel outer space destroying other worlds,and will one day return to earth to destroy us all. NASA know about it ,they're just keeping it a secret along with life in outer space, the coca cola formula,and the all mighty Space Pope. Great pic!!
Reply
:iconchiikei:
ChiiKei Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ohmygoodness, Space Bat! ;___; What an amazing story, and a really cute illustration to go with it.
Reply
:iconspizzina00:
Spizzina00 Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
What a small soft bat!!! :)
Reply
:iconlolli-rox:
lolli-rox Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2009
aaaaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!! =3 :glomp:
Reply
:iconngun:
ngun Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009
This is adorable! XD
Reply
:iconinglage:
Inglage Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I can't help but favorite this. That story made me laugh so hard I cried yesterday. <3

@--(--
Reply
:iconpeterandcompany:
PeterAndCompany Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009  Professional Traditional Artist
If I could get this as a framed print with the description included underneath, I totally would. I love this.
Reply
:iconbeavotron:
beavotron Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
thanks jon!
<3
Reply
:iconpeterandcompany:
PeterAndCompany Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009  Professional Traditional Artist
Hehe, you're welcome Alex. :)

Really, let me know if you ever go the print route with this, I will definitely get one from ya.
Reply
:icondamianagalangal:
damianagalangal Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009
That broke my heart :( I wish it had read "and he survived and became a hero and lived happily ever after"

Adorable drawing.
Reply
:iconpatrickmcevoy:
PatrickMcEvoy Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009  Professional General Artist
Your picture has made me love Space-Bat. Thanks!
Reply
:iconhomiebear:
HomieBear Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009
Poor little guy!
Reply
:iconbetter-pathos:
better-pathos Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009   Digital Artist
oh my god this is so cute. i wanna hi5 the moon
Reply
:icontaigan:
Taigan Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009
I hear about that and I love your take on it! :hug:
Reply
:iconmiss-it-girl:
Miss-It-Girl Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2009
What an adorable piece for such a sad story :sniff: I really like the colors and textured effect you used here... And that bat is just too cute for words :iconadorableplz:
Reply
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