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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

Remembering the Columbia 7: Paying Tribute

Aired February 4, 2003 - 14:08   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

AARON BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: And outside of where we sit at the Johnson Space Center, you get a sense yet again of what an important part space and the space center is to this city. People have been coming here for days.
Jeff Flock has been talking to them for days as well.

And Jeff joins us now -- Jeff.

JEFF FLOCK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Indeed, Aaron.

The larger community out here and the layers continue to grow. They were perched around radios and some battery operated televisions trying to listen to what went on inside. And maybe you can see, this has continued to grow. This is the larger community, that takes space very seriously. And I just want to get some sense of where your head is after hearing the president, hearing this first attempt at dealing with the grief.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he made a wonderful tribute to the astronauts, to their families. I think he said everything that needed to be said.

FLOCK: Like so many others space is in your blood, it's in your family.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

FLOCK: You're brother is in the space program.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

FLOCK: Does this shake your faith at all?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not at all. Not at all. These people work so hard to make sure that things are done right. The training that they have, the education that they have. I have all the confidence in the world that, you know, they did everything they knew of to do.

FLOCK: I know we were talking about being here in '86.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.

FLOCK: There was not this kind of an outpouring in 1986.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.

FLOCK: Why now? Have you learned to grieve?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think 9/11, I think, has brought us closer as a nation. We're holding our kids a little tighter. We're telling mom and dad we love them a little more, keeping in touch. Families are a little closer knit, so I think they feel stronger about it.

FLOCK: I appreciate your comments. Thank you so much.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.

FLOCK: There you go, Judy, some sense of what has gone on outside the gates here as the larger world weighs in as well. To you.

WOODRUFF: That's right, Jeff. It is a larger world. And we know that people of India mourning Kalpana Chawla, the people of Israel mourning Ilan Ramon.

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