The Challenger crew. (NASA/file)
Good morning, it’s Tuesday, Jan. 28, the 28th day of 2014. There are 337 days left in the year. We’ll start the day in the 20s with wind chill readings as low as 10. There’s a slight chance of light sleet and snow this morning, but we should see the sun this afternoon, although temperatures likely won’t get out of the 30s. Temperatures will fall into the upper teens overnight.
On January 28, 1986--28 years ago today--the space shuttle Challenger exploded 73 seconds after liftoff from Cape Canaveral, killing all seven of its crew members, including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe, who was supposed to be the first teacher in space as part of NASA’s Teacher in Space Program. NASA created the program in hopes that sending a teacher into space would boost interest in the shuttle program and demonstrate the reliability of space flight. McAuliffe, who taught social studies at Concord High School in Concord, N. H., was selected in 1985 to make the flight. Officials said she had infectious enthusiasm and was “the most broad-based, best-balanced” candidate among the 10 finalists. The Challenger lifted off at 10:38 a.m. CST, but 73 seconds after launch there was an explosive burn of hydrogen and oxygen. The subsequent investigation determined there was a failure of the seals or o-rings in the joint between the lower segments of the right solid rocket motor that were supposed to prevent hot gasses from leaking through the joint during the rocket motor’s propellant burn.
Today's Highlight in History:
On Jan. 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger exploded 73 seconds after liftoff from Cape Canaveral, killing all seven crew members, including schoolteacher Christa McAuliffe.
On This Date:
In A.D. 814, Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne died in Aachen in present-day Germany.
In 1547, England's King Henry VIII died; he was succeeded by his 9-year-old son, Edward VI.
In 1813, the novel "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen was first published anonymously in London.
In 1853, Cuban revolutionary Jose Marti was born in Havana.
In 1909, the United States withdrew its forces from Cuba as Jose Miguel Gomez became president.
In 1915, the United States Coast Guard was created as President Woodrow Wilson signed a bill merging the Life-Saving Service and Revenue Cutter Service.
In 1939, Irish poet-dramatist William Butler Yeats died in Menton, France.
In 1945, during World War II, Allied supplies began reaching China over the newly reopened Burma Road.
In 1956, Elvis Presley made his first national TV appearance on "Stage Show," a CBS program hosted by Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey.
In 1973, a cease-fire officially went into effect in the Vietnam War.
In 1980, six U.S. diplomats who had avoided being taken hostage at their embassy in Tehran flew out of Iran with the help of Canadian diplomats.
In 1982, Italian anti-terrorism forces rescued U.S. Brig. Gen. James L. Dozier, 42 days after he had been kidnapped by the Red Brigades.
Ten years ago:
British Prime Minister Tony Blair won a legal victory when a judge said the BBC was wrong to report the government had "sexed up" intelligence to justify war in Iraq. Former U.S. Navy commander Lloyd "Pete" Bucher, who'd helped his USS Pueblo crew survive brutal captivity in North Korea, then faced criticism back home, died in Poway, Calif., at age 76.
Five years ago:
In a swift victory for President Barack Obama, the Democratic-controlled House approved, 244-188, a huge $819 billion stimulus bill with Republicans unanimous in opposition despite Obama's pleas for bipartisan support. Lynyrd Skynyrd keyboard player Billy Powell, who survived the 1977 plane crash that killed three band members, died in Orange Park, Fla., at age 56.
One year ago:
Side by side, leading Democratic and Republican senators pledged to propel far-reaching immigration legislation through the Senate by summer, providing a possible path to citizenship for an estimated 11 million people in the U.S. illegally. (Although the Senate did pass such a measure, it has encountered opposition from House Republicans who insist on a more limited approach.) Backed by French helicopters and paratroopers, Malian soldiers entered the fabled city of Timbuktu after al-Qaeda-linked militants who'd ruled the outpost by fear for nearly 10 months fled into the desert.
Actor-dancer John Ronald Dennis is 89. Musician-composer Acker Bilk is 85. Actor Nicholas Pryor is 79. Actor Alan Alda is 78. Actress Susan Howard is 72. Actress Marthe (cq) Keller is 69. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., is 67. Actress-singer Barbi Benton is 64. Evangelical pastor Rick Warren is 60. Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy is 59. Actress Harley Jane Kozak is 57. Movie director Frank Darabont is 55. Rock musician Dave Sharp is 55. Rock singer Sam Phillips is 52. Rock musician Dan Spitz is 51. Country musician Greg Cook (Ricochet) is 49. Gospel singer Marvin Sapp is 47. Singer Sarah McLachlan is 46. Rapper Rakim is 46. DJ Muggs (Cypress Hill) is 46. Actress Kathryn Morris is 45. Rhythm-and-blues singer Anthony Hamilton is 43. Rock musician Brandon Bush is 41. Retired MLB All-Star Jermaine Dye is 40. Singer Joey Fatone Jr. ('N Sync) is 37. Rapper Rick Ross is 37. Actress Rosamund Pike is 35. Singer Nick Carter (Backstreet Boys) is 34. Actor Elijah Wood is 33. Rapper J. Cole is 29. Actress Alexandra Krosney is 26. Actress Ariel Winter (TV: "Modern Family") is 16.
Thought for Today:
"In dreams begin responsibilities." - William Butler Yeats (1865-1939).