More than anything in the world, Rick prized time with his children. His work sometimes took him away for extended periods of time, but he always managed to create ways to bridge the gap created by the time and distance. In fact, on one momentous trip, Rick created a videotape with 17 daily devotions on it—one for each day he’d be gone.
“I can at least talk to them over the videotape and let them know I’m praying for them,” he said. There was nothing he could think of that was better than telling them about God.
His devotional from February 1, 2003, included the following words to his daughter, Laura.
“It’s Landing Day and hopefully, if the weather’s good, I’ll be landing today in Florida. I’m certainly looking forward to seeing you, Matthew, and Mama.” Rick read from Laura’s devotional book and when he finished, he prayed for her. “Okay, Laura, it won’t be long before I see you! I love you very, very much … I’ll see you in just a little while! I love you. Bye, Bye!”
Rick wanted both Laura and Matthew to have a daily relationship with God. It’s what had changed Rick’s life, and he knew it would sustain Laura and Matthew for the rest of their lives. This was Rick’s highest calling.
That day, February 1, 2003, Captain Rick Husband and the crew of the Space Shuttle Columbia died when the craft broke apart over north Texas during re-entry.