I still remember where I was when I heard that the space shuttle Challenger had exploded shortly after liftoff in 1986. I had just walked into my physics lab class, during my freshmen year at the University of Michigan, and people were talking about it. My reaction then was the same as my reaction to today's loss of the shuttle Columbia today -- initial disbelief, followed by crushing sadness.
Whenever someone asked me, when I was 3 or 4 or 5 years old, what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would always answer "an astronaut."
“Just the facts, Ma’am”
— Joe Friday