1/28/86 - Where were you when the Challenger exploded?

I was in my micro-economics class, when the news broke. Professor let everyone out of class. I made my way to the student union building and watched the coverage on the news for a couple of hours before heading back to my apartment.

Sad day.

I was in law school. Didn’t hear about it until I returned to my apartment after class. Didn’t watch much of the coverage, which I assume was wall-to-wall.

I was in my second month in my first engineering job in Jacksonville, FL. I was actually in my cube playing cards during lunch. Some of my coworkers were out on the roof watching for the shuttle contrail. Pretty soon, we were all out on the roof. :frowning:

Home recovering from surgery. Had odd premonition it would happen. Saw it happen live.

I was in Plantation, FL, working as a data entry operator for a medical billing company. We heard a shriek from downstairs and thought someone had won a radio contest (it happened occassionally). A minute later we were all outside, looking at the post-explosion contrail. It sucked.

L.A. I got to work, and one of my coworkers said, ‘The Space Shuttle exploded.’ I thought she was joking.

Before I changed jobs to this employer, I was on the Space Shuttle Support Team at Edwards AFB.

Making rounds as an intern on a pediatric floor in patients rooms catching bits as it unfolded on different television sets.

Similarly I was making rounds on newborns and their parents in our local community hospital when 9/11 happened. Unsure when I went into rooms that did not have the tv on whether or not I should tell them what was going on.

My 18th birthday. I was in high school and in the beginning of the day, I got a lot of attention and everyone was making a fuss over my birthday. Second half of the day, everyone forgot it was my birthday and was freaking out about the Challenger (especially since I lived in Houston, home of the astronauts).

I was flat on my back at a plasma donor center in Minneapolis with a needle stuck in my arm. One of the centrifuge techs in the next room said through the open window “The Space Shuttle just exploded.” The nurse who was adjusting my drip didn’t believe him and said “Are you jivin’ me?” “No survivors.” he replied.

After I left the center, I went home to my rented room in St Paul, crawled into bed (it was freakin’ cold that day) and spent the rest of the afternoon watching the news coverage. The event left me absolutely sick to my stomach.

I was just hired to be a records nurse at the VA hospital in La Jolla, California when I came to work it was all over the TV in the waiting rooms and everyone was in awe and of course sad.

Didn’t another one explode on reentry around this same time, February 3rd I believe 2003?

Third grade in Henniker, NH. Concord High School (where Christa McAuliffe taught) was only 20 minutes away, so of course every school child was glued to the TV. We all watched it live. Took a while for it to sink in. The teachers weren’t really sure what to do, so after a while they sent us out for recess while they discussed it. After a while they just brought us inside and we continued to watch the coverage. Not much else they could really do.

I was home on intersession between semesters of my freshman year in college. I had a friend visiting and we watched on a tiny B&W TV upstairs in our “toy room” (the fourth bedroom my brother and I hung out in).

Sophomore in high school. I was walking into class after a lunch break.

At home. I had just quit my seasonal/temp job at K-Mart before shipping out to basic in the first week of February, so I had the TV on to watch the launch.

At the post office. Somebody came in and said “Didja hear about the space shuttle?”

“Yeah, it went up today, right?” I said.

“Went up and blew up,” he said.

I wasn’t at all sure if I believed him.

I was at home, & saw it live on CNN.

I was in 8th grade English class in a town in Middle Tennessee. It was a very cold day and the building’s heat was not working properly. It was maybe 50 degrees inside, if that. Students and teachers alike had been complaining all morning that school should have been dismissed.

The intercom crackled to life and the vice principal started to speak, "I’m sorry to report that… "

With that the students started gathering books and loading backpacks. I remember thinking that FINALLY they decided to send us home.

The voice on the intercom droned on, “…the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded shortly after liftoff.”

In that moment everything went silent as we tried to process the information. So certain we had been that they were closing school due to the cold that we had a brief discussion as to whether the vice principal would make up something like that as a hoax.

Eventually students gathered in the few classrooms that had televisions and watched news coverage for the rest of the day. I remember we went upstairs to a science lab.

I was a high school senior in Alabama. We were out of school for some reason that day and I was at home. I was in my room listening to a Talking Heads album and my mother came in and said, “Something happened to the space shuttle. It’s on TV.” I went to the living room and started watching the news coverage.

I was in high school, I believe I was between classes when someone told me the news. At first, I didn’t believe it.

I have an alibi.