Part of The Challenger
crew who died during her mission, and the first teacher to fly in space. Chosen from over 11,000 teachers who applied for the chance to join the astronaut ranks. She was born on September 2, 1948
. When she was young she was entraced by the Apollo moon landing program
, and wrote years later on her
astronaut application form that "I watched the Space Age being born and I would like to participate."
picked McAuliffe in the summer of 1984
and in the fall she took a year-long leave of absence from teaching, during which time NASA trained her for an early 1986 Shuttle mission. She was very popular with the media, and the teacher in space program
a lot of attention because of this. It is partly because of the excitement over McAuliffe's presence on the Challenger
that the accident
had such a significant
impact on the nation.