>Twenty five years ago, I was in the 6th grade. I remember the morning of the 28th of January pretty clearly. I was walking down the hallway to the library for a GATE class. We were going to watch the Space Shuttle take off because a teacher was on board. What’s weird is that I remember watching a special about Christine McAuliffe on PBS like a week before and I kept thinking, “Didn’t that already happen? Didn’t she already go up in space? Why are they talking about this like it’s still to come?”
Regardless, I went with my classmates to the library where a TV was set up. A TV! At that time, TVs were never in school. That in and of itself was exciting to me, but watching the Space Shuttle take off was always interesting too. There we sat, mesmerized by the streaking white thing on the screen when something odd happened. There was a puff that didn’t seem normal.
The news reporter started piecing together what was occurring… the Space Shuttle blew up! I remember a teacher saying, “I can’t believe it blew up on the mission with the teacher on it.” Being that I was only 11, I didn’t fully understand what was going on. I knew it was bad and sad, but it didn’t seem real. Maybe I’d seen too many action flicks or maybe I was just to young to comprehend the enormity of what just occurred, but it was another day I will never forget.