Cincinnatian Neil Armstrong’s historic steps remembered on National Moon Day
‘That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.’
CINCINNATI (WXIX) - Fifty-three years ago, on July 20, NASA conducted its first successful mission to the moon,
Apollo 11 launched astronaut and Ohio-native Neil Armstrong, along with Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin and Michael Collins, into space, and Armstrong and Aldrin became the first people to walk on the moon.
Following the mission, Armstrong accepted a teaching job in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Cincinnati. He lived out the remainder of his life in Indian Hill and died in Cincinnati in 2012.
According to NASA, the Apollo 11 space mission began at approximately 9:32 a.m. on July 16, 1969. The mission officially ended on July 24:
- July 16 at 9:32 a.m.: Apollo 11 clears the tower.
- 9:44 a.m.: The spacecraft enters Earth’s orbit.
- After one-and-a-half orbits, Apollo 11 began to move toward the moon’s orbit.
- July 19: The spacecraft enters into lunar orbit.
- July 20 at 4:17 p.m.: The Eagle, the lunar module that held Armstrong and Aldrin, landed on the moon.
- 10:56 p.m.: Armstrong gets ready to take his first step on the moon. Aldrin later follows Armstrong, describing the moon’s surface as “magnificent desolation.”
- July 24: Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins splash down near Hawaii.
“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” Armstrong said after taking his first step on the lunar crust.
President John F. Kennedy announced his goal of landing the first person on the moon at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962.
“For the eyes of the world now look into space, to the moon and to the planets beyond, and we have vowed that we shall not see it governed by a hostile flag of conquest, but by a banner of freedom and peace,” Kennedy said in his speech.
Seven years later, NASA completed the late president’s historic challenge, showing scientific and technological advancements, not only to the Soviet Union but to the world.
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