Image via WikipediaIt is always sad when a tragedy strikes the nation. Even when you have no personal involvement or stake in the event, it is always a somber occasion. For example, I will always remember how I felt when the 9/11 attacks took place. When you know or have some connection with those involved in the event, it is that much more sobering.
25 years ago today, NASA experienced one of their worst disasters ever in the Challenger shuttle explosion. It was an event that was watched live across the country, especially in schools by thousands of school children. One of those killed in the accident was teacher Christa McAuliffe.
When I was a student at Thomas Johnson Junior High School in Lanham, MD, Christa McAuliffe was one of the teachers there. I did not have her as one of my teachers, but I did know her. Several of my friends did have her as a teacher, and all liked her. So, when she was selected to be the first teacher to fly on a space shuttle mission, we were all proud and anxiously looking forward to her making history.
Needless to say, when we received news that the Challenger had exploded and there were no survivors, we were devastated. The great President Ronald Reagan, addressed the nation after the accident. His short message captured the anguish of the nation and comforted us.