We grieve the loss of the entire crew of STS-107, but Kalpana Chawla was my friend.  For several years she worked across the hall at NASA Ames.  Together we formed the Ames Amateur Astronomical Association.  We had lunch together once or twice a week.  She gave me a much-treasured prayer scarf on her return from a visit to India.  I helped her move to Houston when she became an astronaut. 

She was one of the brightest and friendliest people I've ever known.  Like all who knew her. we miss her dearly.

The Launch of STS-107

We viewed the launch from the Banana River viewing site (for NASA guests), next to the Saturn V center, about four miles from the launch pad. It was the first launch either of us had seen. Hanna shot the video.

Video of the launch from ignition to SRB separation

small (1.3 MB)
medium (2.6 MB)

Stills from the video.
STS107_1 STS107_2 STS107_3 STS107_4 STS107_5
STS107_6 STS107_7 STS107_8 STS107_9 STS107_10

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