Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport

Amarillo is home to the seventh longest airport runway in the United States, with a runway at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport spanning 13,502 feet. This airport is used by civilians from across the country and contains a secondary runway with a length of 7,901 for “additional crosswind capabilities.” It serves mainly as a connecting point for travelers looking to fly to various destinations. The airport is managed and run by the City of Amarillo’s Department of Aviation and operates as a full-service, commercial airport open to the public.

Located six miles outside of east Amarillo, the Rick Husband International Airport is where the Texas Air and Space Museum is located. The airport was named as a memorial to Rick Husband, a very famous astronaut who grew up and was born in Amarillo, TX. He is best known for his two trips into space and his death upon the arrival of his second back into Earth. The spaceman was born in 1957 and passed in 2003 when his and his crew’s entry back into Earth on the STS-107 Columbia turned fatal. Their mission, which was to perform educational experiments, was successful as the team rotated in shifts during 24 hour periods to conduct their experiments. As the team entered back into Earth, contact with them was disconnected. It appears while the rest of the crew was knocked out, Husband tried to correct whatever issue was happening to save his team but was unsuccessful. 

Rick Husband’s birthday is July 12, and he attended Amarillo High School, then graduated from Texas Tech University with a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering and from California State University, where he earned his master of science in mechanical engineering. Husband was the head of his team and the pilot for both of the crews that were sent into space. His first trip to space was done aboard the STS-96 Discovery, where the team successfully docked on the International Space Station for the first time ever. This mission was undertaken to deliver essential materials and items to the station for the astronauts that would live among it the next year.

The airport was renamed in memory and honor of Rick Husband in 2003, the same year of his death. Before, it was known as the Amarillo International Airport. Before this facility was used as a commercial airport, it was an airforce base. A facility that was named “Old Municipal Airport,” or “Old Muny,” located four miles from the current airport, was used for commercial travel when it was constructed in 1929. When the Western air express service was inaugurated at Old Muny, Charles Lindbergh attended. It was closed in 1951.

The Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport hosts airlines including Allegiant, American, Southwest, and United for commercial travel. There are also private aircraft that use the airport for service as well as corporate and leisure aircraft. It is also used for flight training and serves the communities of aircraft in the area with a first-class Fixed Base Operator.

When you choose Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport for your travel needs, you will probably have to find a place to park and store your car. If the weather is predicted to be nasty while you are away, it is best to park your car in the 641-space parking garage located directly across from the entrance of the airport. It is the most convenient parking option as it is the closest to the actual facility. 

Learn more by clicking here.

Map from Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport to William Wheeler, Amarillo REALTOR

Map from Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport to Western Bowl