HOUSTON, March 24 (UPI) -- The U.S. space agency says astronaut Scott Parazynski is resigning to take a job in the private sector.
Parazynski, 48, a medical doctor, is a veteran of five space shuttle flights and seven spacewalks.
"Scott is an exceptional astronaut who has served NASA and the Astronaut Office with distinction during these past 17 years," said Steve Lindsey, chief of NASA's Astronaut Office at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. "In particular, his spacewalking expertise has helped pave the way to successful assembly of the International Space Station. As a colleague, former crewmate and friend, I wish him the very best in his future career -- he will be missed."
Parazynski flew on shuttle missions STS-66 in 1994, STS-86 in 1997, STS-95 in 1998, STS-100 in 2001 and STS-120 in 2007, NASA said, logging more than 1,381 hours in space, including more than 47 hours spacewalking. He was selected as an astronaut in March 1992.