Kiera Wilmot, Student Accused of Setting Off Bomb In School, Is Headed To Space Camp Thanks to October Sky Astronaut
Back in April, honor student Kiera Wilmot, made some waves when she was arrested for felony charges after she conducted a science experiment where she mixed some toilet bowl cleaner and some tin foil in a bottle and blew the cap off on school grounds. The experiment caused some smoke, but school officials thought Wilmot -- a student with an impeccable record -- had set off a bomb.
Authorities have since dropped the charges, although Bartow High School officials have inexplicably not yet decided if she can return to the school.
Turns out that former lead astronaut training manager for Spacelab, and decades-long NASA veteran, Homer Hickam, had a similar experience with the law as Kiera did back in his day.
Hickam is famous for having penned the memoir Rocket Boys, which was adapted for the big screen as October Sky, starring Jake Gyllenhaal.
When Hickam was a teenager, law enforcement officials accused him of starting a forest fire. His then-high school physics professor and school principal cleared him of any wrong doing.
Still, Kiera's story struck a chord with Hickam, and so he raised the funds for Kiera and her sister, Kayla, so they could attend space camp at the United States Advanced Space Academy is a college-accredited program at the University of Alabama-Huntsville.
The camp emphasizes education in technology, science and math, while giving students a first-hand experience on how to be an astronaut, with all its various challenges, as well as an engineer and technologist. Everything a fan of science like Kiera would love.
It features spacecraft simulators where students can experience zero gravity, and run through space missions such as voyages to Mars. The challenges mimic exactly what real astronauts must do in order to complete their missions and make it a success.
"I'm really excited about going," Kiera told ABC News "Especially the zero gravity tank, I've always wanted to do that."
Kiera and her sister will attend the space camp in July.