Appreciating all that makes America special

Neil Armstrong

Neil Armstrong, www.greatamericanthings.net

Neil Armstrong wasn’t in the mode of the early astronauts – he was an engineer with a master’s degree. Uploaded by newtimesmy.com.

“One small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.”

Neil Armstrong, greatamericanthings.net

Uploaded by gartak.myblog.it.

Like most of the early astronauts, Neil Armstrong made his name as a test pilot. Unlike most of the others, he was an engineer with a master’s degree. Following a stint as a fighter pilot in the Korean War, he flew the X-15 rocket-powered airplane (joining legend Chuck Yeager on one memorable flight) and other experimental aircraft out of Edwards Air Force Base in California. He joined the astronaut corps in 1962.

Of course, we remember Armstrong for one moment that’s arguably the single greatest achievement of the twentieth century – being the first man to walk on the moon. As the commander of Apollo 11, he earned the privilege of making the quote above. There’s some question about whether it was spontaneous or planned in advance. I hope it was the former, because I’ve always thought it kind of lame. Nowhere near as memorable as Apollo 13: “Houston, we have a problem.”

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