“Catastrophic Failure”

Monday evening, Motor Man and I, along with our friend, Bev, waited on our deck to, hopefully, catch a glimpse of the Antares rocket launch from Wallops Island on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. The rocket was taking approximately 5,000 pounds of supplies to the International Space Station.

Wallops Island is approximately 85 air miles from our house. We have a fairly “clear shot” and were able to view a night-time rocket launch from there in November of last year.

Monday night’s launch was scrubbed because of a boat in the restricted area. The launch was rescheduled for last night at 6:22.

Bev was unable to join us last night, but Motor Man and I were, once again, on the deck, waiting. We had the laptop, and were watching live coverage of the launch on the NASA web-site.

Considering the distance, I knew it would be next to impossible for me to video the actual rocket with my camera, so I decided to video the launch from the web-site.

If you listen carefully, in addition to the crickets, you can hear launch control with the countdown. And, at the 49-second mark, you’ll hear Motor Man softly say: “It blew up. It blew up, honey. Catastrophic failure.”.

We take particular interest in these launches because of our fairly close proximity to Wallops Island.  Motor Man and I took his Mom for a day trip to nearby Chincoteague back in the spring, and we visited the area again with our friend, Donna, in May.

Of course, there’s a sense of relief that the rocket was unmanned, and miraculously, there were no injuries, but we were still saddened to see this unfortunate event take place.

~These Days Of Mine~

15 responses to ““Catastrophic Failure”

  1. There will be a lot of investigation of the problem for sure…..but I think they believe there was an engine malfunction and they initiated the explosion for safety reasons……still sad though – thank heavens nobody was hurt with all that debris raining down in the launch area!


  2. This was so sad to see, but it’s a blessing no one was injured.

  3. It’s always heartbreaking to see although no one was killed or injured. It reminds me of those “catastrophic failures” when some of our brave astronauts DID lose their lives!

  4. It saddened me when I saw it and even though there were no people in it it still was so sad. I will NEVER forget watching Challenger —we lived in Florida and could watch from the back yard so we always did what you do–watch it on tv or laptop and then go out in the yard. I knew immediately something horrible had happened. I will never ever forget. I do love to watch any kind of launch, don’ t you?? So fun.

  5. We were watching too and were so saddened to hear what had happened. I think we especially have a vested interest since Wallops is in our ‘back yard’. Know they’ll solve the problem and will be off into the sky again….and we’ll be watching and cheering.

  6. Amazing almost first-hand view and what a relief there were no humans aboard. I can only imagine the expense involved in the equipment and the launch though.

  7. So sad to see such a catastrophic failure. It’s too reminiscent of the Challenger disaster. Thankfully, it was unmanned and no one suffered.

  8. Thank goodness no one was injured!

  9. Great idea to film the take off while watching for a sighting! I can’t believe you stayed silent while filming that! I would have had to bleep over my reaction! So sad and I’m sure lots of lost $$.

  10. I was watching the live broadcast on t.v. … It’s always eerie when you’re watching a live feed and something like this happens.
    Amazing that there were no injuries associated with it..
    Hopefully tonight’s launch goes as planned..

  11. Dianna what a great post–I am like another of your friends–you would have had to mute all my yelling in dismay I am glad another ship has already gone up with supplies and no lives were lost.

  12. Shirley Matthews Dunn

    It is never good to see anything like that happen but thank the Lord no one was hurt.

  13. All the years we traveled over Wallops Island, we’d always say we were going to leave Chincoteague for an afternoon and tour the NASA station. Of course, we never did…beach calls, wildlife and lighthouse demanded its due. This was heartbreaking. At least no one was on board.

  14. Amazing you are so close and yes, like you, I was saddened to hear of this but relieved to know it was unmanned.


  15. One never expects this, but I suppose there is always the possibility. With so many watching, a blessing no one was injured.

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