Neil A. Armstrong, RIP

The man who commanded the greatest flight in history, and one of the milestones of human history, died today.

Neil Armstrong was a lot more than the person who was fortunate to win the Apollo crew scheduling lottery, and thereby become the person who piloted the lunar module Eagle on the first manned lunar landing and the first to leave a footprint in the lunar regolith. He was an Eagle Scout, a Korea War hero, and an excellent research pilot and aerospace engineer whose contributions to the field would have been notable had he never flown in space. His superb skills were demonstrated during the Gemini 8 mission, when he narrowly averted disaster in what might have been America’s first fatal space flight. His contributions to the Apollo program as an engineer were significant.

After his historic mission and for the remainder of his life, he conducted himself with modesty and reserve, a true gentleman in a culture that increasingly rewards the loud, vulgar buffoon. His life had its share of problems, including the tragic death of his 2-year-old daughter in 1962. But through everything, he was a class act.

Armstrong’s authorized biography is a superb book to learn more about this great man.

It’s a beautifully clear night in western Massachusetts and the moon hangs high overhead. Go outside and take a look at it, in honor of Neil Armstrong.

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1 Comment

  1. Soren

     /  August 26, 2012

    Well said, Kenneth. RIP Mr Armstrong.

    Reply

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