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Remembering Challenger

Discussion in 'Random Discussion' started by coderitr, Jan 26, 2006.

  1. coderitr

    coderitr Thread Starter

    Oct 12, 2003
    Twenty years ago Saturday, at 11:40 AM EST, the space shuttle Challenger exploded over the south atlantic. I was a freshman in college and as I walked through the student center after my biology lecture, my friend told me what had happened. I refused to believe it until I made my way through the crowd and saw the late Peter Jennings on the television. Six astronauts and one schoolteacher lost their lives.

    Francis R. Scobee -- Commander
    Michael J. Smith -- Pilot
    Judith A. Resnik -- Mission Specialist 1
    Ellison S. Onizuka -- Mission Specialist 2
    Ronald E. McNair -- Mission Specialist 3
    Gregory B. Jarvis -- Payload Specialist 1
    Sharon Christa McAuliffe -- Schoolteacher

    Biographical information on these are at http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/Biographies/challenger.html
  2. poochee


    Aug 21, 2004
    I was at working at McClellan AFB, and someone brought a TV in so we could watch. I'll never forget it!! It was a large Directorate and a deadly silence set in for a few minutes then we stated reacting. I cried of course. In fact just thinking about it now brings tears to my eyes.:(
  3. Chicon


    Jul 29, 2004
    It has shocked the entire world ! I still remember the pictures. :(
  4. coderitr

    coderitr Thread Starter

    Oct 12, 2003
    Me too, poochee. I didn't want this thread to turn into a debate but I still believe that the bureaucrats at NASA were responsible. Every engineer that ever worked on the shuttle design told them that it was unsafe to launch because the o-rings that sealed the linkage between the SRB's and the extenal fuel tank wouldn't operate correctly at that temperature. (I think it was 38 degrees at the Cape that day.) They launched anyway. (n) :(
  5. Guyzer


    Jul 3, 2004
    First Name:
  6. coderitr

    coderitr Thread Starter

    Oct 12, 2003
    Thank you for the link, Wimpy. That is indeed an interesting read. A couple of excerpts:

  7. littlemar


    Jul 12, 2001
    My youngest son was 4 at the time and he was very upset when he saw it on tv. He realized that it was real and not some "show". I was surprised that he could understand the loss. :(
  8. johnnyburst79


    Aug 16, 2005
    I was in 2nd grade (i suddenly feel very young) and we were watching this on TV during class. I remember seeing the explosion and then looking at the teacher and seeing her cry.
  9. Noyb

    Noyb Trusted Advisor

    May 25, 2005
    I had the rare opportunity to watch the Columbia lift off from the condo of a retired NASA director.
    He had a sample piece of tile – when he handed it to me – he told me to not tap it with my finger nail because I could break it.
    I was waiting for it to return over my Condo.
    Imagine what I was thinking when the news originally said a foam collision could not cause a tile problem.

    As much as he was allowed – he described the Challenger explosion.
    The explosion was a secondary event. The strut holding the shuttle to the tank was damaged by the seal leak, the shuttle was separating from the tank and was starting to disintegrate and collide with the tank.
    NASA knows what happened to every part and person for about every millisecond.
    They will not tell what happened to the crew out of respect.
    What he didn't say, told me there was more to the story.
  10. DiSaidSo


    Jul 8, 2004
    I had a very similar experience. I was in the 5th grade, and since I went to a smallish school, the entire 5th grade was in the library. And I remember sitting there on the floor and not really understanding what just happened. I mean, 20 minutes ago, all of the teachers were so excited that another teacher was going up into space! And now they're all crying. I don't think I really understood what happened until I was a little older and saw a successful launch. I mean, it was 1986. We didn't understand what a successful launch was supposed to look like.
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