NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley safely splashed down in a SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule off the Florida coast on Sunday after a two-month stay on the International Space Station. The two men made history earlier this summer when they became the first NASA astronauts to catch a ride to orbit on a private spacecraft as part of the SpaceX Demo-2 mission. It was a test flight to show NASA that the capsule is safe enough to fly humans, so the return of the astronauts concludes that mission.“Today we really made history,” NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said at a news conference with SpaceX President Gwynne Shotwell and the four astronauts who will fly aboard the first regular flight to the space station later this year. “We are entering a new era of human spaceflight.” “This is really just the beginning,” Shotwell said. “We are starting the journey of bringing people regularly to and from low-earth orbit.” The return of Behnken and Hurley capped the first mission in which U.S. astronauts flew to the station on an American spacecraft since NASA’s shuttle program ended in 2011. The highly anticipated flight also provided an inspiration for a nation grappling with a pandemic, civil unrest and a tattered economy. The astronauts launched for the space station on May 30 aboard a Falcon 9 rocket made by Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp.Notably, it was the first water landing for a crewed US spaceship since the 1975 Apollo-Soyuz mission. The hatch opening was briefly delayed as a team worked to stop a leak of rocket fuel vapor, but around an hour after splashdown, the astronauts exited the capsule and headed for shore on a helicopter.They were reunited with their families in Houston, where they walked off a plane – in apparently good physical shape and upbeat spirits -at a military base.