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Space Shuttle Disintegrates Over Texas
FOX News Channel ^ | February 1, 2003 | FOX News Channel Staff

Posted on 02/01/2003 10:04:41 AM PST by MeekOneGOP

Edited on 04/22/2004 12:35:27 AM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.  — Space Shuttle Columbia blew up and disintegrated in flames over Texas Saturday morning, just 16 minutes before it was expected to land at Cape Canaveral. A senior U.S. official said the spacecraft was "gone."

Seven astronauts -- six Americans and the first Israeli to go into space -- were aboard the shuttle, which had been orbiting the Earth for 16 days.


(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; US: District of Columbia; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: challenger; columbiatragedy; disaster; feb12003; nasa; restinpeace; spaceshuttle

Click here for “Taps”


Rest in peace...

1 posted on 02/01/2003 10:04:41 AM PST by MeekOneGOP
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To: MeeknMing

2 posted on 02/01/2003 10:06:25 AM PST by Brett66
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

To: Alamo-Girl; onyx; SpookBrat; Republican Wildcat; Howlin; Fred Mertz; dixiechick2000; SusanUSA; ...
Space Shuttle Disintegrates Over Texas

Excerpt:

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla.  — Space Shuttle Columbia blew up and disintegrated in flames over Texas Saturday morning, just 16 minutes before it was expected to land at Cape Canaveral. A senior U.S. official said the spacecraft was "gone."

Seven astronauts -- six Americans and the first Israeli to go into space -- were aboard the shuttle, which had been orbiting the Earth for 16 days.

NASA lowered its flags at Cape Canaveral at 11 a.m. EST, but no official statement had yet been made about the fate of the crew. Officials at Kennedy Space Center said President Bush would be making an announcement.

The flag was lowered to half-staff at the Capitol in Washington.

White House officials said there were no indications that terrorism was involved. Bush was alerted to the likely disaster at Camp David, and Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge went to the White House to monitor the situation.

A senior U.S. official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said no threat was made and the shuttle was out of range of a surface-to-air missile.

Columbia was at an altitude of 207,000 feet over north-central Texas at a 9 a.m., traveling at 12,500 mph, when Mission Control lost all contact and tracking data. The shuttle was aiming for a Florida landing at 9:16 a.m.

Television footage showed a bright light followed by smoke plumes streaking diagonally through the sky. Debris appeared to break off into separate balls of light as it continued downward.

Residents of Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana said they saw flames and heard a window-rattling boom at about 9 a.m., the same time all radio and data communication with the shuttle and its crew was lost.

"It was like a car hitting the house or an explosion. It shook that much," said John Ferolito, 60, of Carrolton, Texas.


I heard a noise at my house also this morning. (Carrollton is about 20 miles from me). So did my friend in North Dallas, and my Dad in Quitman, Texas (about 72 miles east of Dallas). My Dad said it was so loud at his house he went outside to see if something hit it.

What a terrible tragedy. My prayers go out to the crew/passengers and their families...



Please let me know if you want ON or OFF my General Interest or Texas ping list!. . .don't be shy.

4 posted on 02/01/2003 10:15:49 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: Brett66
That's a beautiful picture, FRiend. Thanks...
5 posted on 02/01/2003 10:17:02 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
This is an awful occurrence but you can already hear the Nervous Nellies wanting to freeze the shuttle program. They don't understand risk and the need to run up against if if we are to move forward.
At a speed of TWELVE THOUSAND plus miles per hour, conditions must be pretty damn perfect.
6 posted on 02/01/2003 10:21:30 AM PST by thegreatbeast
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To: MeeknMing
An important paragraph from the story:

Shortly after Columbia lifted off Jan. 16, a piece of insulating foam on its external fuel tank came off and was believed to have hit the left wing of the shuttle. Leroy Cain, the lead flight director in Mission Control, assured reporters Friday that engineers had concluded that any damage to the wing was considered minor and posed no safety hazard.

Maybe they should have aborted at liftoff... But the problem is that once you are up in space, you have no choice, but to try to land...

During the liftoff phase, there are "critical" points that decisions must be made quickly. They may not have thought the collision was significant during liftoff.

But the greatest stress on the wing would be on re-entry into the atmosphere -- causing the wing to shear off, and destroying the shuttle.

7 posted on 02/01/2003 10:27:33 AM PST by topher
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To: MeeknMing
They were coming in blind, no communications, supersonic, dead stick, and with the glide angle of a stone. Out of all the missions flown, that there have been only two failures, both disasterous, is amazing in itself.

Our hands have been tied by the dependence on yesterday's technology, some of which is now a quarter century old or more. The space shuttles are work trucks, and Model T work trucks, at that. More modern designs were not adopted, because of budgetary constraints, but also because of a considerable amount of inertia at the top. In so many ways, the timing of this calamity could not be worse, and there are no useful answers.

Death was always a passenger.

8 posted on 02/01/2003 10:40:56 AM PST by alloysteel
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To: topher
I saw that. One would think that if there was slight damage to the wing, that wouldn't have been the cause, but who knows?

I'm watching FOX News and they are showing a scene somewhere in Texas with a blackened, smoking patch of land. I assume in the Nacogdoches area where the greatest amount of debris fell.


Nacogdoches, TX

9 posted on 02/01/2003 10:45:22 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
Bump
10 posted on 02/01/2003 10:52:29 AM PST by Fiddlstix (Tag Line Service Center: Get your Tag Lines Here! Wholesale! (Cheaper by the Dozen!) Inquire Within)
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To: MeeknMing
Prayers being lifted up for healing hearts soon. God bless America.
11 posted on 02/01/2003 11:02:18 AM PST by Texagirl4W
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To: Texagirl4W
"Almighty Maker of the All,
Who guides the stars with steadfast law,
Whose least creation fills with awe.
Oh, grant Thy mercy and Thy grace,
To those who venture into space."

"We pray for one last landing
On the globe that gave us birth;
Let us rest our eyes
On the fleecy skies
And the cool, green hills of Earth."

Robert A. Heinlein
The Green Hills of Earth

May God bless the heroes of every kind that seek to understand His glory. Amen.

12 posted on 02/01/2003 11:10:38 AM PST by 50sDad
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To: MeeknMing
Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
Of sun-split clouds--and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of--
wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there,
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air.
Up, up the long, delirious burning blue,
I've topped the windswept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or even eagle flew.
And, while with silent, lifting mind I've trod
The high untrsspassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

John Gillespie Magee, Jr.

13 posted on 02/01/2003 11:18:22 AM PST by scoopscandal
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To: MeeknMing
Nacogdoches police spokesman Greg Sowell said there were several reports of falling debris in the East Texas city 135 miles northeast of Houston.
He did not know exactly how many reports.
Nacogdoches enacted its emergency operations center and was sending emergency crews to the reported debris, he said.
"At this point we're just trying to get it out to the public to not touch or tamper with this debris in any manner due to the possibility of toxic substances being on the debris," Sowell said.
Jeff Hancock, a 29-year-old dentist, said he found a chunk of debris in his office.
"There's actually a piece in my office. It came through the roof of my office. It's about a foot long metal bracket," he said.

Source: Witnesses find debris in Nacogdoches

News just also said that family members of Columbia being flown back to Houston to Johnson Space Center. Very somber day.

14 posted on 02/01/2003 11:18:31 AM PST by exhaustedmomma (Praying for families of Columbia Shuttle)
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To: exhaustedmomma
Here's my tribute. I've had this song going in my head for at least a month, now, I suspect, prophetically. It's the theme song from the new Enterprise, "Faith of the Heart".http://scifi.myrealm.co.uk/audio/enterprise2.mp3
15 posted on 02/01/2003 11:19:22 AM PST by CalvaryJohn
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To: MeeknMing
A terrible day in American and Israel history. My condolences go out to both countries and all people living there and of course to the families of the risk takers.
They will always be remembered in History.

This country is the greatest in History and will forever have a people that will risk everything to make it even greater.

God Speed as Angles trending upward dare to fly

16 posted on 02/01/2003 11:23:26 AM PST by TLBSHOW (God Speed as Angles trending upward dare to fly Tribute to the Risk Takers)
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To: 50sDad
Thanks. Here is a snippet of an article in the Dallas Morning News. I'm going to post the full text of it in a minute on this thread if you want to see it...

Three Texans among Columbia crew Although all seven astronauts aboard the space shuttle Columbia trained at NASA in Houston, the commander and two others had even stronger connections to Texas.

17 posted on 02/01/2003 11:25:34 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: All

Three Texans among Columbia crew

02/01/2003

From Staff and Wire Reports

Although all seven astronauts aboard the space shuttle Columbia trained at NASA in Houston, the commander and two others had even stronger connections to Texas.

Commander Rick Husband grew up in Amarillo and received a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering from Texas Tech University in 1980.

Pilot William McCool graduated from Coronado High School in Lubbock. And Kalpana Chawla, a mission specialist, earned a master's degree from the University of Texas-Arlington in 1984.

All died Saturday morning when the shuttle disintegrated over Texas en route to a scheduled landing in Florida.

Husband, an Air Force colonel, was commanding his first mission in only his second space flight.

"I think a lot of it has to do with being in the right place at the right time, for starters," Husband, 45, said before the flight.

Husband was a test pilot until he was selected for the astronaut corps in 1994, after his fourth try.

"It's been pretty much a lifelong dream and just a thrill to be able to get to actually live it out," Husband said.

McCool was a space rookie and the pilot of the shuttle mission. McCool, 41, graduated second in his class from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1983. After serving as a commander and test pilot, he became an astronaut in 1996.

Part of his job on the mission, which was devoted mainly to scientific research, was to draw blood from his crewmates, a skill he practiced on NASA volunteers.

"I didn't want to inflict pain," said McCool, a father of three sons. "We weren't really gathering science, so everything that they were going through was for my benefit, and I guess I felt bad a little bit."

Chawla moved to the United States after receiving a degree in aeronautical engineering in India in 1982. She then attended UTA and graduated with a master of science in aerospace engineering in 1984. Her doctorate came from the University of Colorado-Boulder in 1988.

For Chawla, the Columbia mission may have been a chance at redemption. Mistakes on her only other space flight, in 1996, caused the crew to lose control momentarily of a science satellite. Two other astronauts went on a space walk to recapture it.

"I stopped thinking about it after trying to figure out what are the lessons learned, and there are so many," Chawla said. "After I had basically sorted that out, I figured it's time to really look at the future, not at the past."


Online at: http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dallas/latestnews/stories/020103dnnatcrew.113c8800.html

18 posted on 02/01/2003 11:26:26 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
I am shocked and distraught
19 posted on 02/01/2003 11:27:34 AM PST by my_pointy_head_is_sharp
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To: TLBSHOW
Thanks FRiend...
20 posted on 02/01/2003 11:27:53 AM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing; All
In honor of the Columbia astronauts, would someone please post the official NASA picture of them, on this and every thread about this tragedy? Their faces deserve to be remembered. Thanks...
21 posted on 02/01/2003 12:04:06 PM PST by FBD (May God be with the families of "Columbia")
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To: Formerly Brainwashed Democrat
Good idea. Thanks...



22 posted on 02/01/2003 12:29:27 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
Thanks, Meek.
23 posted on 02/01/2003 12:36:54 PM PST by FBD (May God be with the families of "Columbia")
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To: MeeknMing
My uneducated take was a wing flew off. Watching Fox right now I think they're saying readings from sensors on a wing were lost first as the disaster unfolded.
24 posted on 02/01/2003 12:39:57 PM PST by dennisw (http://www.littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/weblog.php <AND> http://rantburg.com)
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To: dennisw
It will take a while for the official report, but your take on the cause sounds right.

Brave souls. Poor families, I grieve with them.

25 posted on 02/01/2003 12:49:56 PM PST by LibKill (ColdWarrior. I stood the watch.)
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To: dennisw
Yes. I have FOX on now as well. Basically, they were getting sensor readings that were neither max nor min, but rather readings they would expect to get if 'the wires were cut'...Scary.
26 posted on 02/01/2003 1:36:00 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
Yes. I have FOX on now as well. Basically, they were getting sensor readings that were neither max nor min, but rather readings they would expect to get if 'the wires were cut'...Scary.
 

Wires cut could mean the sensors were being demolished. Or a fly by wire computer failure? Max and min would be more important if they are temperature sensors  ... some of them are but all I recollect is a hydraulics sensor being talked about

27 posted on 02/01/2003 2:00:36 PM PST by dennisw (http://www.littlegreenfootballs.com/weblog/weblog.php <AND> http://rantburg.com)
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To: dennisw

28 posted on 02/01/2003 2:11:30 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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To: MeeknMing
Bump.

Flags up.
29 posted on 02/01/2003 2:42:49 PM PST by Oldeconomybuyer (Let's Roll)
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To: MeeknMing
I really cannot help but think how the Dims and the DU'ers are going to make this into a conspiracy theory, as they did with Wellstone.
30 posted on 02/01/2003 5:22:12 PM PST by Paul Atreides
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To: Paul Atreides
With the 'RATS, I guess 'expect the unexpected' is a good rule of thumb. I almost said 'I hope so', and backspaced. I don't hope so, but I would not be surprised by anything the traitors might do...
31 posted on 02/01/2003 5:36:15 PM PST by MeekOneGOP (9 out of 10 Republicans agree: Bush IS a Genius !!)
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bump to save forever


32 posted on 11/09/2004 5:29:37 PM PST by meema
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