Tuesday, July 20, 1999
Mankind's Giant Leap
BY JOHN JOHNSTON
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Thirty years ago, a bug-shaped spacecraft transported two American astronauts to a lifeless, waterless sea known as Tranquility.
Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin near a flag planted on the moon during the Apollo 11 mission on July 20, 1969. Neil Armstrong, the first man to set foot on the moon, took the picture.
(AP file photo)
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Houston, Tranquility Base here, astronaut Neil Armstrong radioed from the moon at 4:17:42 EDT. The Eagle has landed.
Less than seven hours later, the 38-year-old Ohioan became the first human to set foot on another world, uttering another now-famous phrase: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.
On Earth, people worldwide reveled in the success of Mr. Armstrong and Apollo 11 crewmates Buzz Aldrin, who also walked on the moon, and Michael Collins, who awaited their return in the command module.
Debate about the lasting significance of the Apollo program Where did it lead us? Where do we go next? continues to this day.
As for Mr. Armstrong, he still lives in southwestern Ohio, dividing time between homes near Lebanon and in Indian Hill.
Mr. Armstrong rarely discusses his moon mission publicly, and does not grant interviews. But at a press conference Friday in Florida, he addressed Apollo's legacy.
The important achievement of Apollo, he said, was a demonstration that humanity is not forever chained to this planet, and our visions go rather farther than that.
The Moon Landing: 30 Years Later
Neil Armstrong, The Reluctant Hero
Enquirer headline: 'Footsteps on moon!'
Lebanon's code of silence shields Armstrong
Landing's legacy is still being created
Still to come: the moon, Mars and beyond
NASA research is spinoff city
Flight abounded with drama
Infographic: The descent of the Eagle
Where the moonwalkers are now
Ohio leads nation in number of astronauts
Cyberspace a great resource for outer space
Special multimedia section from Associated Press