Sunday, August 26, 2012

Neil Armstrong - First Man On The Moon

Neil Armstrong passed away on August 25, 2012 at the age of 82.

He will always be honoured as the first man on the moon.

Read all about him from Wikipedia.

Neil Alden Armstrong (August 5, 1930 – August 25, 2012) was an American astronaut, test pilot, aerospace engineer, university professor and United States Naval Aviator.

He was the first person to walk on the Moon.

Before becoming an astronaut, Armstrong was a United States Navy officer and had served in the Korean War.

After the war, he served as a test pilot at the National Advisory Committee For Aeronautics High-Speed Flight Station, now known as the Dryden Flight Research Centre, where he logged over 900 flights.

He graduated from Purdue University and the University Of Southern California.

A participant in the US Air Force's Man In Space Soonest and X-20 Dyna-Soar human spaceflight programmes, Armstrong joined the NASA Astronaut Corps in 1962.

His first spaceflight was the NASA Gemini 8 mission in 1966, for which he was the command pilot, becoming one of the first US civilians in space.

On this mission, he performed the first manned docking of two spacecraft with pilot David Scott.

Armstrong's second and last spaceflight was as mission commander of the Apollo 11 moon landing in July 1969.

On this mission, Armstrong and Edwin (Buzz) Aldrin descended to the lunar surface and spent 2½ hours exploring, while Michael Collins remained in orbit in the Command Module.

Armstrong was awarded the Presidential Medal Of Freedom by President Richard Nixon along with Collins and Aldrin, the Congressional Space Medal Of Honour by President Jimmy Carter in 1978, and the Congressional Gold Medal by President Barack Obama in 2009.

Armstrong was born in Wapakoneta, Ohio, to Stephen Koenig Armstrong and Viola Louise Engel.

He was of British and German descent, and had two younger siblings, June and Dean.

Stephen Armstrong worked as an auditor for the Ohio state government.

His love for flying began when his father took him at 2 to the Cleveland Air Races.

On July 20, 1936, when he was 6, he experienced his first airplane flight in Warren, Ohio, when he and his father took a ride in a Ford Trimotor, also known as the "Tin Goose".

Armstrong began taking flying lessons and at 15 he earned his flight certificate.

Armstrong was active in the Boy Scouts and he eventually earned the rank of Eagle Scout.

As an adult, he was recognised by the Boy Scouts Of America with its Distinguished Eagle Scout Award and Silver Buffalo Award.

On July 18, 1969, while flying towards the Moon inside the Columbia, he greeted the Scouts: "I'd like to say hello to all my fellow Scouts and Scouters at Farragut State Park in Idaho having a National Jamboree there this week, and Apollo 11 would like to send them best wishes".

After Armstrong retired from NASA in 1971, he avoided offers from businesses to act as a spokesman.

The first company to successfully approach him was Chrysler, for whom he appeared in advertising starting in January 1979.

Armstrong thought they had a strong engineering division, plus they were in financial difficulty.

He acted as a spokesman for other companies, including General Time Corporation and the Bankers Association Of America. He acted as a spokesman for US businesses only.

Along with spokesman duties, he also served on the board of directors of several companies, including Marathon Oil, Learjet, Cinergy (Cincinnati Gas & Electric Company), Taft Broadcasting, United Airlines, Eaton Corporation, AIL Systems, and Thiokol.

Armstrong was twice married.

He visited Malaysia in 2005 as part of the then Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's government's Global Leadership Forum.