President Reagan spoke about the sacrifice of the Challenger crew and promised that they would never be forgotten; that the exploration of space would continue. Yet I don't believe that the lethargic careful dipping of our toes into the interstellar ocean is paying tribute to them.
is it all over? Is heroic exploration now only past tense? Possibly. But I suspect that the banality of a world lacking in secrets -- a globe whose every acre can be perused with the click of a mouse -- is only a temporary setback.
I left flowers at both of the shuttle monuments, as well as at each of the individual graves of the three Columbia crew members who were buried behind there -- Michael Anderson, Laurel Clark, and David Brown.
"This business consists of riding bombs. And if you do absolutely everything right, you can marshal the energy to do something astonishing like put yourself into orbit. If you do even a few things wrong, it's going to act like a bomb."
In the present uncertainties of the space program, a great transitional opportunity exists. As we reflect back upon the tragic loss of Challenger, we must rise to the challenge in the spirit of those who have so bravely shown the way forward.