Space shuttle Challenger anniversary: Video from 1986

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Today, Jan. 28, marks the 24th anniversary of space shuttle Challenger’s explosion during liftoff. Just like the Sept. 11 terrorists attacks years later, the Challenger accident was one of those “where where you when it happened” moments in our history.

Besides being national news, the shuttle accident as big news locally. The stations here aired the launch live — unlike the networks (other than CNN). Here’s video from 1986 of WFTV-Channel 9’s coverage that evening. Look for appearances from anchors Bob Jordan and Martie Salt, and at the end, see Bob Opsahl with Jordan, weatherman Danny Treanor and sports anchor Mike Storms.

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Roger Simmons has been blogging about Orlando television since 2001. You can email him at