Blogs  |  1.28.2021

Honoring the Challenger Crew 35 Years Later

Challenger Center

On this day in 1986, we lost the Space Shuttle Challenger and its beloved crew. Today, and every day, we remember Commander Francis R. “Dick” Scobee, Pilot Michael J. Smith, Mission Specialists Judith A. Resnik, Ellison S. Onizuka, and Ronald E. McNair, Payload Specialist Gregory B. Jarvis, and Teacher-in-Space, Payload Specialist Sharon Christa McAuliffe as their spirits live on in a new generation of explorers and scientists.

“Today marks 35 years since we lost the incredibly talented Challenger 51L crew. Just three months after the tragedy, the families of the crew created Challenger Center to carry on the mission of their loved ones. It continues to be Challenger Center’s great privilege and responsibility to keep that vision alive. With every mission we fly, every program we develop, and every child we inspire, the crew’s legacy lives on. We join the families in pausing to remember the Challenger heroes,” said Lance Bush, President and CEO, Challenger Center.

We are honored to carry on the crew’s mission. From the lower east side of Manhattan, to the rural mountains of Kentucky and beyond, thousands of our alumni are now STEM professionals. You can join us in carrying on the crew’s mission and empowering every student to see a future in STEM by donating today.  

January 28th is also NASA’s Day of Remembrance, honoring the crews of the Challenger, Columbia, and Apollo 1. Both Kennedy Space Center and Johnson Space Center will be live streaming Day of Remembrance ceremonies at 11:00 a.m. EST. You can watch the ceremonies through these links:

  • Johnson Space Center:
  • Kennedy Space Center: