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Curiosity of a girl lands on Mars (2)


14:30, August 16, 2012

"Something like this is probably never going to happen to me again, so I just want to enjoy every single moment," Clara was quoted as saying as she waited in the control room where the anticipation and anxiety was building.

This is witnessing history and "I am going to be part of it", she said.

Clara's 14-year-old sister, Renny, and her parents, Lisheng Cao and Frank Ma, accompanied her to the laboratory.

Both parents graduated from Tsinghua University and immigrated to the US in the 1990s, according to a People's Daily article.

Her father was surprised at the invitation, saying it was an especially rare chance for Chinese Americans, the article said.

Clara, a sixth-grader at the time, suggested Curiosity because, as she wrote in the beginning of the essay, "it is an everlasting flame that burns in everyone's mind. It makes me get out of bed in the morning and wonder what surprises life will throw at me that day".

Her essay was one of nine finalists out of more than 9,000 submitted.

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