35th anniversary of NASA Challenger tragedy

National

FLORIDA (AP) — NASA’s space shuttle Challenger launched from the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida on its 10th mission on Jan. 28, 1986.

It exploded 73 seconds after liftoff, claiming the lives of all seven people onboard: Gregory Jarvis, Judith Resnik, Dick Scobee, Ronald McNair, Mike Smith, Ellison Onizuka and Christa McAuliffe.

FILE – This photo provided by NASA shows the crew of the Space Shuttle Challenger mission 51L. All seven members of the crew were killed when the shuttle exploded during launch on Jan. 28, 1986. Front row from left are Michael J. Smith, Francis R. (Dick) Scobee, and Ronald E. McNair. Front row from left are Ellison Onizuka, Christa McAuliffe, Gregory Jarvis, and Judith Resnik. (NASA via AP)

McAuliffe was due to be the first teacher in space. The New Hampshire woman had been selected to join the mission and teach lessons from space to children around the country.

An investigation found that the two rubber O-rings, which were designed to separate sections of the rocket booster, failed due to weather. The shuttle launched on a cold Florida morning.

Thursday will be the 35th anniversary of the tragedy.

FILE – In this Jan. 28, 1986 picture, the space shuttle Challenger lifts off from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. shortly before it exploded with a crew of seven aboard. (AP Photo/Thom Baur)

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