Remembering the crew of the space shuttle Challenger

 

Jennifer Lewis-Hall shares her personal remembrances of astronaut Ronald Ervin McNair.

Ronald Ervin McNair Photo credit: NASA

Ronald Ervin McNair
NASA Astronaut
Photo credit: NASA

"I grew up in the same community with his wife Cheryl and her family in South Jersey. Our parents were best of friends. I met astronaut Ronald McNair while in school and it was an immense privilege meeting him when he, Cheryl and her parents came to our home for dinner. Remembering back to that incredible visit, he was truly brilliant but was among the most humble and unassuming people you'd ever meet. He spoke about his family, growing up in South Carolina and how education played such an important role in his pathway to success. I later learned that as a youngster he was captivated by the Soviet and American space programs. He was exceptional in science and math, studied at MIT and had a passion for physics . The dedicated husband and father of two children also loved karate and playing the saxophone.  I remember that his smile and graciousness resonated with each of us and simply filled our living room. He just made us feel so proud and also feel like we too were able to accomplish anything we dreamed of doing or becoming." -Jennifer Lewis-Hall

Challenger_flight_51-l_crew

STS-51L
Photo credit: NASA