I was driving down University Drive on my way to Hollywood when a bulletin interrupted a radio call-in show: first they announced “a malfunction” aboard the space shuttle, and then an explosion. I felt sick to my stomach as I heard the news. At the credit union, someone had brought out a TV set and people were watching it numbly.
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I even attended Space Camp in Titusville, Florida and Huntsville, Alabama once at the age of ten and again at twelve using money from my bat mitzvah. I knew how intense the training was and the kind of rigorous physical demands it made on one’s body to be able to be an astronaut. I was weak, with tiny spaghetti arms and a peanut-sized frame. Still, I dreamt of going into space.