“The crew of the space shuttle Challenger honored us by the manner in which they lived their lives. We will never forget them, nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for the journey and waved goodbye and ‘slipped the surly bonds of earth’ to ‘touch the face of God.'” – President Ronald Reagan, Jan. 28, 1986
Today is the 28th anniversary of the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster and the deaths of the seven astronauts aboard. Here is a segment of the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour report from that night that public television audiences across the United States watched as they tried to make sense of the day’s events. In it, you will see Judy Woodruff reporting on each of the seven astronauts, an in-depth interview with teacher Christa McAuliffe who died on board, and President Reagan’s address to the nation from that afternoon that concluded with the powerful quote at the top of this post.