I will always remember January 28, 1986, when space shuttle Challenger exploded just 73 seconds after launch.
This is my recollection of the days events:
I was a 15-year-old high school student; I was in my 5th period Biology class. It was a sunny January day. I remember thinking to myself "I can't wait to get home to watch the replay of the launch while I do my homework". I remember looking at the clock; it was around 11:30am. However, my thoughts were not about eating lunch in 30 minutes; my thoughts were about Challenger. I thought to myself "surely the space shuttle has blasted off by now and they are in space.....I guess everything worked out this time." I remember thinking about Ronald McNair and, at the time, I thought he was the 1st African American in space. I thought to myself "I am going to be the 1st African American woman in space!" I thought about Christa McAuliffe, the Teacher from New Hampshire, who captured everyone's heart, by being chosen to go into space.
The STS-51L crewmembers are: in the back row from left to right: Mission Specialist, Ellison S. Onizuka, Teacher in Space Participant Sharon Christa McAuliffe, Payload Specialist, Greg Jarvis and Mission Specialist, Judy Resnik. In the front row from left to right: Pilot Mike Smith, Commander, Dick Scobee and Mission Specialist, Ron McNair. The crew members were lost with the Space Shuttle Challenger 73 seconds after lift off on January 28, 1986.