TEACHER IN SPACE


The fateful Challenger mission also carried with her Christa McAuliffe who was to be the first teacher in space, rendering the mission all the more poignant for educators and students all around the world. In 1985, McAuliffe was selected from more than 11,000 applicants to participate in the NASA Teacher in Space Project. On her application, McAuliffe wrote, “I cannot join the space program and restart my life as an astronaut, but this opportunity to connect my abilities as an educator with my interests in history and space is a unique opportunity to fulfill my early fantasies. I watched the space program being born, and I would like to participate." McAuliffe was a popular teacher, known for being enthusiastic and skilled at making difficult subjects understandable. As a payload specialist on the 51-L mission, McAuliffe had been trained to conduct experiments in the weightlessness of space and apply her gifts on the world stage by teaching lessons to students back on earth. On January 28, 1986, the shuttle exploded 73 seconds after launch. After her death, schools and scholarships were named in her honor, and in 2004 she was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

“I touch the future. I teach”

-Christa McAuliffe


STS-107 Columbia Crew


Space Shuttle Columbia, STS-107

February 1, 2003

Rick D. Husband, Commander

William C. McCool, Pilot

David M. Brown, Mission Specialist 1

Kalpana Chawla, Mission Specialist 2

Michael P. Anderson, Mission Specialist 3

Laurel B. Clark, Mission Specialist 4

​Ilan Ramon, Payload Specialist 1

51-L Challenger Crew


Space Shuttle Challenger, 51-L

January 28, 1986

Francis R. Scobee, Commander

Michael J. Smith, Pilot

Ellison S. Onizuka, Mission Specialist 1

Judith A. Resnik, Mission Specialist 2

Ronald E. McNair, Mission Specialist 3

Gregory B. Jarvis, Payload Specialist 1

S. Christa McAuliffe, Payload Specialist 2

OUR HEROES


The losses of the space shuttle crews of Challenger in 1986 and Columbia in 2003 dramatically impacted the Clear Creek ISD community. The crew members of 51-L and STS-107 were not only sons and daughters, fathers, mothers and friends - they were heroes and adventurers who embodied a spirit of curiosity and exploration.

The Clear Creek Independent School District is home to a community unified by that spirit of exploration, so when it was time to determine the name of the District's second stadium, on February 24, 2014, the Board of Trustees voted in favor of the community's recommendation for Clear Creek ISD Challenger Columbia Stadium to forever honor the space shuttle program legacy and the astronauts who perished aboard both flights.

Clear Creek ISD is proud to celebrate the lives of 14 fallen heroes through the construction of this public complex and community meeting place. The students of today and tomorrow will know their story and continue to be inspired by their legacy.