No one could ever forget the frigid morning of January 28, 1986. It started out as a morning like any other, but the events of the day rocked the nation to its core.
It was the day that the Challenger space shuttle was set to make its grand voyage into space. On board that day was the commander, Dick Scobee, Michael J. Smith, Ronald McNair, Ellison Onizuka, Judith Resnik, Gregory Jarvis, and Christa McAuliffe.
A mere 73 seconds after takeoff, severe tragedy struck when the shuttle malfunctioned and completely exploded, instantly capturing the lives of all on board.
The families of those devoted astronauts have remained supportive of the mission since the moment of their passing and couldn’t possibly be more proud of them. One family, in particular, recently told a story that has quickly taken the internet by storm.
Dick Scobee’s wife made a startling revelation just after her husband passed and they chose to bring the news to the world 33 years after his passing. His daughter, Kathie Scobee Fulgham, told PEOPLE, “My dad’s briefcase was in his room. Mom opened it, Among his personal belongings: a wallet, his keys, pictures of his family, shuttle souvenir pins, business cards, astronomy charts, flight manuals, and an unsigned Valentine’s Day card for my mom.”
She finished off by adding one more thing they found. “[There] was a scrap of paper bearing his handwriting.” This was, quite possibly the most intriguing part of all his belongings.
The scrap of paper held a quote by Ben Bova: “We have whole planets to explore. We have new worlds to build. We have a solar system to roam in. And if only a tiny fraction of the human race reaches out toward space, the work they do there will totally change the lives of all the billions of humans who remain on Earth, just as the striving of a handful of colonists in the new world totally changed the lives of everyone in Europe, Asia, and Africa.”
She finished off by saying, “We don’t know why that quote was in his briefcase. Maybe he was planning on using it for a speech. Maybe he just liked it. But that message served as a beacon to us about why Dad chose the path he chose as an explorer. It gave us hope for the future - our future.”
This is something they knew the world needed to hear. Despite their heartbreaking loss, they’ve chosen to cling to the good and hold on to the lasting legacy and memories that their dear father left for them.