I, like a lot of kids, was sitting in a classroom when the Challenger shuttle exploded. Even living in Florida, it was the 1st space shuttle I remember seeing launch into space. It was everywhere in the news because a teacher was going up in the shuttle, Christa McAuliffe.
Even after the shuttle had exploded, I still did not know there was a problem. I remember thinking, "where did the shuttle go" as the 2 rocket boosters flew into different directions, but didn't really understand the gravity of the situation i had just viewed.
Of course, we now know why the shuttle did not make it.; the failure of an O-ring. Hard to believe something that small could have caused a catastrophe so big.
Read more here.