The Final Flight of the Challenger

by CJFosdick on July 17, 2011

It was a sad day in America. At 11:29 on  July 11, 2011, NASA launched the Challenger for last time.  The purpose of this six day flight is transferring equipment and supplies to the International Space Station. America’s glorious space program is no more, destroyed by an egomaniacal president, Obama, who apparently wants to go down in history as the president who eliminated America’s Space Program.

Americans will continue to dream of our space program,  where we soared higher than the eagles. This final space flight is the start of a sentimental journey into history. Flight Atlantis will be the last space ship to fly into outer space. One minute, 40 seconds into the flight, Atlantis was twenty-two miles into space, going 2400 miles per hour. Unbelievable! There was good, solid rocket separation. I shivered at the spectacle. Tears gather in my eyes because this is the grand finale, the end of an era, America’s greatness lifting to the stars for the last time. A Final Day in History was July 8, 2011.

We are now dependent on Russia to get our astronauts to and from the International Space Station. From now on, WE HAVE TO HITCH A RIDE. NOW WE ARE A SUPPLICANT TO RUSSIA. THIS IS AFTER WE WON THE SPACE RACE FROM THEM WITH OUR FIRST MOON WALK IN 1969. WHAT A COME-DOWN.

The history  of the space shuttle – the very first nerve wracking two man flight Built to launch like a rocket and then land like an airplane, the space shuttle was unheard of in 1960s and 1970s.The space shuttle is the most complex machine ever built by man. Skeptics even wondered if it would even work. Some comments of the time were, “It won’t work; it’s too complicated. It is a disaster in the making. On April 12th 1981, veteran astronauts, John Young and pilot, Bob Crippen, set out to prove the critics wrong. They were to take the maiden voyage. With the world watching, they set off on a 2 day test flight. Together, they traveled more than a million miles and circled the earth 36 times. They got the space craft up and back down safely and checked all the systems they could while in orbit. This was a sign of good things to come for our space program. Now 30 years later, the program is coming to an end.

America’s thirty year adventure is over. America’s spirit, innovation, and pure D guts into space is over. The triumps and the tragedies of NASA’s quest to conquer space just won’t be anymore. Space travel captured the imagination of a nation. With the Challenger tragedy where all the crew members were killed on January 28, 1987, all of America grieved. Many of us will never forget that trargic day. Then, Columbia disintegrated over Texas in 2008, and again America grieved. But Columbia would fly again. The farewell Discovery flight, another space craft in NASA’s fleet touched down for the final time on  March 9, 2011.

Yes, a new space race has begun with private companies filling the void left by America’s once glorius space program. But this isn’t the same. And with the dimise of NASA, over 25,000 jobs will be lost. No one has an answer for what is the future of America’s Space Program. Our great andwonderful Administration is basing its hope on private businesses.

The world owes a lot to America’s Space Program in the discovery and use of everyday products that came about because of the the space program. These include personal computers, and cell phones. Even something as simple as ‘Tang’, a substitute for orange juice, was invented for the astronauts to drink in space. So with a lump in my throat and a sadness wrapped around my heart, I say goodbye to the men and women who boldly flew beyond the boundaries of this earth into the very heavens above, daring men and women who blazed their way into history books and helped make America the great and wonderful country she is today.

Let us give tribute to these modern day heroes and heroines who were so like explorers of the past.

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