Skooter reporting 07/24/12
Though she was not the first woman in space, that was Soviet cosmonautin June 1963, was the first US woman to travel into space. She has died aged 61, of pancreatic cancer, her foundation says.
Sally Ride Science said in a statement, "Sally's historic flight into space captured the nation's imagination and made her a household name.”
She was one of the astronauts who blasted off in the US space shuttle Challenger in June 1983.
Ride has four university degrees including a doctorate in physics. Ride died on Monday in La Jolla, California.
US Presidentsaid in a statement that he was "deeply saddened" to hear about her death and that as the first American woman to travel into space, Sally was a national hero and a powerful role model.
She is survived by her mother and partner Tam O'Shaughnessy.