Community remembers local astronaut on Challenger anniversary

It has been 34 years since the space shuttle Challenger exploded on Jan. 28, 1986, killing all seven people on board.

Posted: Jan 28, 2020 3:27 PM

ILION, N.Y. – It has been 34 years since the space shuttle Challenger exploded on Jan. 28, 1986, killing all seven people on board.

One of the astronauts lost on that mission was Gregory Jarvis, a graduate of Mohawk High School.

There is a memorial dedicated to Jarvis at the Herkimer County Office Building, which was dedicated last year.

Herkimer County students also petitioned NASA for artifacts to include in the memorial, and recieved a flight suit which was unveiled at the dedication ceremony in May of 2019.

“Basically, how we try to honor Gregory B. Jarvis is not about the tragedy, but instead about his legacy, and so when we’re talking about him, we talk about the legacy that he leaves behind,” said Jeremy Rich, superintendent of Central Valley School District.

The others killed in the explosion included the pilot, Michael Smith, Commander Dick Scobee, and astronauts Judith Resnik, Ronald McNair and Ellison Onizuka.

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