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Harris shares dialogue from inside the crew cabin during the countdown, from astronauts trying to keep their spirits up during delays, through the launch, to the final words from the crew before all data was lost from the spacecraft.
With the shuttle and its boosters raining down in pieces, Harris explains what happened inside the firing room. At one point, the press officers quickly began copying launch media - TV footage and images - knowing the originals would soon be impounded by security for use in the official investigation.
Harris shares his thoughts on NASA's decision not to resume commentary immediately after the explosion and recounts the media frenzy that followed, of journalists watching recovery ships with night vision cameras in an attempt to see what was being dredged from the crash site while others used an amateur radio receiver to listen in on the chatter between these ships.
More than just a personal account of the disaster, Harris punctuates his book with conversations and interactions between himself and some of NASA key players, bringing the story to life. Throughout, Harris' love for NASA and the shuttle program is obvious. He retired from the agency in 1998.