28 January 1986, Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, USA
Most of you have been tied up here today. You've been on the boards here and your positions here. And you haven’t seen probably much of what’s been going on on TV across the country today.
It’s been a national day of tragedy, I can guarantee you of that. And you’ll see that when you finally get out of here this evening. All of America is sharing in the tragedy that you have lived through today.
We have had tremendous triumphs.
We have had triumph after triumph after triumph. And that’s how mankind goes ahead, to be a little philosophical for just a moment. We try, we try, we try!
In this program we’ve succeeded.
Really if we’re honest about it and honest with ourselves it’s beyond our wildest dreams , I would never have thought that we would go this far, without losing some people.
Something where you’re up there travelling around at five miles per second! Heat of re-entry, and all the complexities and the things that have to work right,
And we come to a time where something happens, and we have a tragedy that goes along with out triumphs.
And I guess that’s the story of all mankind.