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Maine astronaut Chris Cassidy throws first pitch at Hadlock Field

After graduating from York High School, Cassidy became a Navy SEAL and then spent 15 years in the astronaut program before retiring in 2021.

PORTLAND, Maine — Chris Cassidy, York High School graduate, and retired astronaut, threw the first pitch at Hadlock Field during Tuesday's Portland Sea Dogs' game.  

The game was in celebration of Cassidy, and the team even created a bobblehead of him that was given to the first 1,000 fans to enter the ballpark. 

"I'm really humbled as a kid growing up in Maine that you can be somebody with a bobblehead at the Portland Sea Dogs' game,” Cassidy told NEWS CENTER Maine. "I can't believe it." 

After graduating high school in York, Cassidy became a Navy SEAL. He then entered the astronaut program in 2004. During that time, Cassidy traveled to space three times and was eventually given the leadership role of chief astronaut before retiring in 2021. 

Maine has a key role in humankind’s continued effort to explore the cosmos, according to Cassidy.

"There’s a lot of activity in our nation’s space program these days and people are surprised at how widespread in the nation it is," he explained. "Maine has just an integral part as every other state."

The retired astronaut now joins other well-known Mainers like actor Patrick Demsey and Senator Margret Chase Smith with bobbleheads of their own. 

"It’s a series that we’ve done dating back, now, I think seven or eight years, where we’ve done a bobblehead of a prominent Mainer," Geoff Iacuessa, president and general manager of the Portland Sea Dogs said. 

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