Monthly Archives: May 2017

A Tragic Outcome For So Many

Dear Readers,

Watching one of my favorite films, “Hidden Figures,” personal memories of 1986 came racing back…


A TRAGIC OUTCOME FOR SO MANY,  Memories from January, 1986


My family was living in Colorado Springs, Colorado, a booming technology area, sitting at the base of Pikes Peak.  For ten years we loved living there.  My children hardly remembered living in New England.

Sharon Christa McAuliffe, born in Boston, Mass. and a teacher at Concord High School in New Hampshire, and the crew of the space shuttle Challenger, were about to launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida.  That was kind of exciting for us, as my husband worked at TRW in Colorado Springs, and helped build the electronic components that went into the shuttles.

All set up to watch the launch that January 28th, 1986, suddenly only 73 seconds into the flight, the Challenger exploded into a million pieces, killing everyone on board and paralyzing the entire country.  The shock wave resonated across the USA.

After getting over the loss of all those brave astronauts, as well as our famous school teacher, little did any of us realize in Colorado Springs how devastating this disaster would be, or how many people’s lives would be affected.

Within a couple weeks my hubby came home with the dreadful news, “We were told today that all os us would be laid off within the year, in three waves!” he sighed.

Many employees started looking for work immediately and left on the first wave, but my husband didn’t want to.  We had just bought our dream home on five acres in Falcon, Colo. (A small town outside of the Springs), and we all loved living there.  So he decided to try and ride it out.

By the time the third wave of layoffs finally came, there were no jobs left anywhere.  Colorado Springs turned into a ghost town.  All the large tech companies closed their doors, leaving empty high rises and hundreds of deserted homes all over the urban area.  Finding work became impossible.

Through a blessing from God, my mate contacted my brother-in-law in Massachusetts who managed to get him a position at AT&T in New England.  He immediately went back east to start his new career, while the kids and I stayed behind to finish out the school year, and I attempted to sell our dream home.

Finally, during summer break from school and no success at selling the house, we leased our home, rented a uhaul, and reluctantly headed back east.  My 19 year old son decided he would never leave the state he loved so much, and moved in with a friend until he could get his own place.  My teenage daughter fought us tooth and nail to stay with him in Colorado, but she had not yet finished high school and so, reluctantly came east with us.  My 11 year old was excited to go, and saw it as an adventure.

A severe recession hit the middle of the country as people poured out of the area and headed to the east and west coasts in search of work.  Thank God, we didn’t have to worry about that.  Who would ever imagine that the shuttle explosion could affect so many lives.

Over the next few years the mushroom effect of the recession hit the entire United States.  Homes plummeted in value, work slowed down all across the country, and my hubby again, was laid off from his new job at AT&T in New England.

It never occurred to most people just how merciless the repercussions would be all across America, or how vastly it would affect the electronic and technology industry in our world.

Only God knows what’s ahead for every single one of us.  I’m convinced that is why we need to listen to His words in the Bible that warn us,  “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.”   Matt. 6:34  (NIV)


Love in Christ,    Claire   xoxo