Thursday, January 28, 2016

Remembering the Challenger Disaster


Do you remember what you were doing 30 years ago today, when you heard the shuttle had exploded?

15 comments:

Meade said...

Hanging sheetrock.

chickelit said...

Mixing up chemicals.

virgil xenophon said...

Was sitting in the waiting room of Park DuValle healthcare Center in Louisville waiting to meet my wife (who was the Dir of Nursing) for lunch and watching it on TV live. She was watching on the 2nd floor waiting room tv as it caught her attention while passing thru..

Lem said...

I was about 6 months into my new job in downtown Jersey City, on the same street as the Colgate toothpaste factory. I was drafting plans of the sewer system we were also surveying.

It was a small office at a brownstone, we had the second and third floors. There was a Polish restaurant in the first floor.

We heard the news on the radio. Much discussion followed among the engineers, but i don't remember the details.

bagoh20 said...

I was probably working away diligently at something that ended up a dead end.

Methadras said...

Yeah, I was sitting in Anthropology class and we were one of the rare classes that actually had a tv in the room and my teacher got a phone call from either another teacher or from the office telling him to turn on the tv and change the channel and there it was. We were all stunned and couldn't believe it.

Amartel said...

In college but probably unaware that day and missed all the drama b/c no tv.

MamaM said...

No.

The swirly picture of something gone unmistakeably awry remains clear in my mind.

So does the "slipped the surly bonds of earth" line.

I also recall the secrecy that followed regarding what the crew knew and experienced in the final moments before death.

Snopes has more on that with links.

Videotapes released by NASA afterwards showed that a few seconds before the explosion, an unusual plume of fire and smoke could be seen spewing from the lower section of the shuttle's right solid-fuel rocket. It was generally assumed (and NASA did little to disturb this opinion) that all aboard died the moment the external tank blew up.

NASA later conceded it was likely that at least three of the crew members aboard remained conscious after the explosion, and perhaps even throughout the few minutes it took for the crew compartment of the shuttle to fall back to Earth and slam into the Atlantic Ocean. The agency was highly secretive about matters relating to the Challenger tragedy, actively fighting in the courts media requests to be allowed access to photos of the wreckage, the details of the settlements made with the crews' families, or the autopsy reports, and this reticence to share information likely convinced some that there was more to the story than was being told

I'm Full of Soup said...

1600 Market Street, 10th floor in Philadelphia.

Sydney said...

I was in medical school. I remember walking into the student lounge and finding everyone in there sitting silently in disbelief in front of the television.

Dad Bones said...

I was in Titusville, Florida. I planned to watch the launch but when it was delayed I went out looking for a job. I had forgotten about it until someone yelled and pointed at the sky just as it was blowing apart. There was no one nearby to talk to so I stared at it for awhile and tried to understand why it looked the way it did since I had no idea what a spaceship explosion was supposed to look like. The enormity of it didn't take hold until I watched it on TV that evening. I was preoccupied with my luckless job search and whether I should stay in Florida. I left.

Methadras said...

Shortly after the explosion there were some pictures or a news crew video of what appears to look like the charred remains of one the crew members that landed on a road.

JAL said...

I was in a home for troubled kids in Asheville, NC doing a practicum for my masters degree. I walked by one of the office/rooms with a dutch door and looked over the top to see the TV coverage.

A college roommate lived in Concord, NC where Christa McAuliffe taught. Less than 6 degrees there.

JAL said...

Methadras -- I believe that was the Columbia over Texas and Louisiana in 2003.

rcommal said...

I do.