Challenger exploded as nation watched.
It was 1986 – my junior year at
. It must have
been a snow day because everyone was home. It was still too early for the noon
news normally but there was a special broadcast because of the space shuttle
Challenger. To be honest I was not really that into the space program but – tot
eh rest of the world – it was a big deal because this would be the first time a
civilian would be aboard. US
The shuttle was supposed to have launched on the 23rd but, due to weather delays and then technical delays, it did finally lift off until the 28th. That morning, at 11:38 a.m., the nation watched as finally the Challenger lifted off. And then … just 73 seconds later … the nation watched in horrified disbelief as the shuttle exploded in a forked plume of smoke and fire.
In addition to McAuliffe, six others perished in the tragic accident. They were: Commander Francis Scobee; Pilot Michael Smith; Mission Specialists Ronald McNair, Ellison Onizuka, and Judith Resniik; and Payload Specialist Gregory Jarvis. McAuliffe had been the second Payload Specialist.
Share Your Thoughts:
Do you remember the Challenger Disaster?
Do you recall where you were or what you were doing at the time?
On This Day is a prompt to further explore historical events.
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2016