Memories of the Challenger

This is one page of many, check out the intro at I Remember Challenger for others.

This page currently edited by: Dagwood. Past editor: Junior

I was a junior in high school & I was out of school that day to watch the shuttle launch with my daddy ~whom I was very close to. He NEVER missed a take off in all his 71 years & he had me in front of the TV awaiting the countdown along side him. I have, to date, read much & watched documentaries on television on Christa. I often wonder how her children & husband got through that horrible time & what her children grew up to become. They should be proud of their mother & carry her memory proud throughout their lives! She was an all American hero & when the tragedy happened that morning~ the whole world cried for their loss. May the 7 lives we lost rest in peace & be with God. Not one of you will be forgotten as you will live through us in our memories & our children. The Challenger crew made the ultimate sacrifice for our country & the progress of our space program. Also, we carry with them in our hearts the crew of the Columbia which we lost in 2003. God Bless you brave & dedicated souls. Vanessa

From: Vanessa

That was the worst day of my life. To be honest I was in denial for many weeks. My sister, Judith, was in that craft. I was and still am devistated and to see a website with everyones memories is very rewarding. I know she knew her life was at risk and that was so her to do what she loved any how. Thanks for all of your memories here. I hope none of you have had any personal relationships with any of the crew members. And if so, My heart goes out to you and I know they are all celebrating in heaven for what they have accomplished in their lives. Take care. -Andrea Resnik

From: Andrea Resnik

It was really sad when it exploded. It was a serious tragedy I will never forget.

From: MAX

I was in the sixth grade when the Challenger blew up, and I remember my teacher turning on the television in the classroom so that we can see the live coverage of a current event in the making. I, my teacher and my classmates were deeply saddend by this event. We back then felt like it was the 9-11 of the eighties. Yet the impact of 9-11 is indeed on a greater scale for Americans, and Non Americans (on our side) alike.

From: Heather

I was in 5th grade in Titusville, FL. They let the 5th and 6th graders go out behind the school to watch it go up. The teachers had their radios on to the local station that broadcasts the launches. The school administrators were on the roof of the school with their binoculars to watch it lift off. It went off and we all new it was drastically wrong, the way it came back down. Then we heard on the radio what had happened and everyone started to cry. It was a terrible tragedy, one that no one here in Titusville will ever forget.

From: Mary

I remember the Challenger explosion so vividly like it was yesterday. I was 8 years old in 3rd grade. The reason I think it is so burned into my memory is that I share the same surname as the beloved Christa McAuliffe. We were in the lunchroom having lunch and one of my classmates came up to me and said "Ha ha, your mother just blew up", kids can be so cruel. Of course she wasn't my mother and this boy was just teasing me but this is what I remember from that day. Of course I recall watching it unfold on television as well.

From: Kimberly McAuliffe

I remember the Challenger. I was 12 years old and in jr high. I remember my whole school sat in the gym and watched it on tv. I remember everyone saying 54321 and seeing the explosion. I was very sad.

From: lisa c

I was in A&P (airframe and powerplant) mechanic school when one of the instructors poked his head in the door and said "Well, they just blew up the shuttle." Not much more really, we just watched the news on breaks and such. I guess I was more focused on school and getting a career. Columbia affected me more.

From: John

I had just came back from getting my drivers license. I walked into class and my teacher stopped the class and brought in a tv. He turned it on and we watched what had happened. That was a hell of a day.

From: ltemti

I have a very clear memory of watching all of that happen in my second grade class. My teacher had hyped it up for weeks and taught us all about space and shuttles. I'm not sure if we saw the actual explosion or a replay but the image of my teacher crying really stuck with me.

From: Kasey Miller

I was a senior in high school & cutting school the day the shuttle Challenger exploded. Whenever my friends & I cut school, we ALWAYS watched the 12:00 news. Weird, I know, but my sister had cut school one day & didn't know there had been a bomb scare & school closed early; but my parents did! Anyway...I remember how surreal it all seemed. We watched the explosion over and over again, like everyone else, and couldn't believe all those brilliant people were...just....gone. Very sad, even to this day. When the shuttle Columbia exploded last year, it brought it all back, and I relayed this story to my son.

From: Phyllis

I was a student at Youngstown State University in Ohio studying (or goofing off) with some friends at the library when a classmate came in and said "the space shuttle exploded"! He was a real smart *ss so we thought he was putting us on, but we soon confirmed the sad truth. We had not yet met, but my wife was on vacation in Florida and video taped the shuttle takeoff from just outside Disney World.

From: Greg

I was in kindergarten when this happened. I remember one of the other teachers coming in the room, crying. That's how I found out what happened.

From: dave

I was only 2 and a half when the Challenger exploded, and I had heard of it since then but I never really grasped the seriousness of what had happened until I was in elementary school. Our class was watching the tv movie "Challenger" when we were in second grade, four years after it had happened. I burst into tears at the sight of the explosion, as did the rest of my class. Before then, I had wanted to be an astronaut, and my teacher asked if I still wanted to be one, and I remember shaking my head no because I couldn't say the word because I was still crying.

From: Alecia

I was in Sixth Grade when the Challenger blew up. Our class was gathered around a television set waiting for the take-off when the unthinkable happened. I was completely stunned. My teachers started to cry, and my fellow classamates and I were definitely taken aback by the horror on T.V. and scared by our teacher's reaction; as a young child, it is difficult to watch adults break down and appear so vulnerable.

From: Jennifer

Wow, reading all this 80s stuff and planning my class reunion. I was a freshman in my second period class (Geography) and the teacher next door opened the accordian seperator that divided our rooms. He said that something happened and that we needed to watch "a tragic piece of history" All the TVs in the school were on. I remember a feeling a sadness. AFter 2nd period was over there was such a hush that loomed over the school.

From: LoriC

I was in a school in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. I had just turned 19 and was going back to my dorm after class. The TV was on in the lobby and I passed by just after the "event", but I remember the endless replays

From: Clint Wirth

Oh, I was in fourth grade. As a kid I had been very interested in the space program and I had memories of early shuttle landings (I believe that they were test flights). I was excited because one of the astronauts was a civilian, and I though that it was just a matter of time before regular people would get to fly in space. At any rate, I was sitting (in the back of the room) in Sister Janet's class at Little Flower School in St. Louis. The PA system came on and it was Sister Shiela and she announced it. I remember that evening that I went to my grandmother's house. I was very upset.

From: Bob Blaskiewicz

I was in 11th grade and everyone was in the auditorium watching the pre-launch and launch. I suppose this could be comparable to "where were you when JFK was murdered" because this event meant so much to so many. I am 35 now and I can still remember who was sitting next to me, what they wore, and exactly what they said when people started talking. I have never in my life experienced a public event that produced such a sudden and prolonged period of silence. Even the kids that didn't care about the launch were lost for words. (I think they did, but didn't want to show it) It seemed like nobody said anything for 5 min, I was truely at a loss for words. Our entire school corporation closed 30 min after the explosion. When my friends and I got home we just kind of sat there, noone wanted to do anything but watch TV and find out what happened. It was definately a day of my life that I will never forget. Unfortunately there was another day like that one...........9/11/01. Christopher, Firefighter/Paramedic

From: Christopher

I was 8 years old when I watched the Challenger explosion from Mrs. Meyer's 2nd grade classroom at Dickenson Elementary, in De Pere, WI. I won't forget this day as long as I live; for as long as I had lived I had wanted to become an astronaut-a facination that stayed with me until high school. I can watch that explosion still vividly in my mind, and I still get that same knot in my throat.

From: Megan Mutchler

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