My family and I had lived in Satellite Beach, Florida for nine years until the summer of 1985. We saw the first Space Shuttle launch, Voyager I and II, and everything in between. We moved to New Hampshire 6 months before Challenger blew up. I’m very lucky because I did not have to personally watch it explode overhead, and I would have been watching the launch.
In a few days, we will remember Columbia from just three years ago. Once again, I lucked out because I had planned to waken in time to watch the shuttle go overhead during its reentry. Thankfully, I slept through it as NASA believes the main breakup occurred almost directly over the city I was living in at the time, Lubbock, TX.
Hopefully, I will no longer need to be thankful for any close brushes with aerospace disaster. NASA needs to develop a more dependable crew module for ascent and descent; one which is intelligently conceived and prosecuted, unlike the space shuttle program. A program with a lot more bang for our buck.