The video that ran around the world of the space shuttle Columbia streaking toward its doom came from WFAA-TV
Dallas, which was routinely covering the shuttle's descent over the area live,
anchored from the studio.
Cameraman John Pronk's live shots from Fair Park were enhanced by those of a
second cameraman, Timb Hamilton, who is a space buff and happened to be shooting
the shuttle from his front yard.
Hamilton said he was in denial as to what
he'd witnessed at first, but he knew he had to quickly bring the video
to the station.
He described the sight as resembling someone throwing "a handful of
sparklers," adding that he ran on adrenaline most of that day and what he'd
witnessed didn't really catch up with him until later.
He was shooting video at the Dallas symphony when the orchestra paid tribute
to the dead astronauts with an unscheduled performance -- introduced after a
moment of silence and followed by a moving silence, Hamilton said -- of Bach's
Air on the G String.
Hamilton said he returned to the station to deliver the symphony video, which
he'd been assigned to shoot, went to the darkroom and "teared up for a
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