Photo Credit:NASA

In Memoriam – STS-51L Challenger

There’s lots we should update, but today we’re anchored at Les Saintes, a small group of islands near Guadaloupe in the Caribbean. I was last here exactly 33 years ago today. How, you may ask, do I recall some obscure anchorage from decades ago? And the particular date I was there? It was one of those memorable days.

We’d sailed over from Guadaloupe in Anduril, dropped the hook and spent the afternoon playing in the water. As sundown came we went ashore for a beer. The French vacation/party town at Anse du Bourg was mute. Every TV in town was playing nearly continuous repeats of the o-ring failure aboard STS-51L Challenger 12 miles above the Florida coast that had occurred earlier that morning while we were sailing and swimming. And thus we learned the somber news. It’s amazing how nearly universal that news was. Here we were in a small, remote outpost of Europe, near a slightly larger but still remote outpost a long way from anywhere and yet all eyes were on the reporting of that event.

So today’s post is in memory of those 7 intrepid souls aboard the space shuttle Challenger who gave their lives in the interest of advancing science, and learning, and the human spirit of adventure.

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