The Challenger tragedy happened 30 years ago, but it seems like yesterday. All 7 astronauts died during an explosion shortly after take-off due to O-ring failure.

On January 28th, 1986, all eyes were glued to the television to watch the popular Challenger space shuttle take 7 astronauts into outer space. Of those on board was Christa McAuliffe, a 37 year old school teacher from New Hampshire - the first ordinary (non-astronaut) US citizen to travel to space.

CNN via YouTube

73 seconds after liftoff, the Challenger exploded in the sky, sending pieces of the shuttle in every direction. From the video you can see the cockpit area, that holds the crew, trailing off to the right. There would be no survivors as the world looked on, glued to their TV sets.

The video below is raw-uncut footage of the friends and family reacting as they watched the shuttle take-off from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Their reaction, once they realize the explosion wasn't supposed to happen, is heart-breaking.

Do you remember where you were when Challenger exploded? Were you watching it live on TV? I remember it very well as I was a young teenager watching it at home in Chisago City. It's a day I'll never forget...