Saturday, January 28, 2006

Remember the Challenger

challenger crewThere are moments that are etched forever into the public consciousness and become nearly mythical. Moments like the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the horrible day of infamy, treachery and death we call 9/11 (Nine one one or Nine eleven). Another moment is the day the space shuttle Challenger launched and millions watched as something terribly went wrong. It's a time when everyone remembers exactly where they were and what they were doing when they either saw the shocking accident or heard the news for the first time. It was 20 years ago today and I know exactly where I was and what I was doing and how my heart was staggered and wept.

2 comments:

TimK said...

JBU Cafeteria...

Tony said...

I was in between classes at JBU (John Brown University) and one of the professors had rolled out a large TV on a stand into the hallway for the students to watch the launch. Remember, how everyone wanted to see the launches back then? I think that changed after the Challenger... people are sort of afraid to watch them now. Anyway, I was walking up to the TV with a bunch of students gathered around it and one of the girls said, "That doesn't look right... look at the smoke trails." I then saw what she saw and knew something was very wrong. None of us wanted to say what we thought... we just kept hoping it was an illusion or something. No one wanted to believe it. Not even when the shocked announcers started to speculate what was happening...

I cried a lot from that, Tim. I was so much a believer in a better future through Science and Space exploration just like all the science fiction books I used to read (is this maybe why I now read more of the horror genre?). Seeing the Challenger and her crew die that day... it changed me... and changed America.

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