50th Anniversary of Apollo 11

“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard…”

President John F. Kennedy

On July 16, 1969, mankind launched its first of many rockets that would successfully land on the moon and return safely back to Earth. Fast forward to July 16, 2019, 50 years after this historical event, and we are now celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Apollo 11!  My fellow Back to Space Ambassadors and I were granted the phenomenal opportunity of attending this anniversary celebration at the Kennedy Space Center in Orlando, Florida. There, I met world-renowned astronauts Mark Kelly, Michael Collins, and Charlie Duke!

It was a huge honor to listen to the astronauts’ incredible stories and adventures that made history.  I also heard inspiring speeches from June Scobee Rodgers, who won the Education Award; David Thompson, who won the Innovation Award; and Joann Morgan, who won the Pioneer Award.  I learned that it took several countries and about 400,000 men and women to help make the Apollo 11 mission possible.  Over 600 million people watched Armstrong take that first step on to the moon!

As we celebrated the anniversary of the first successful mission to land man on the moon, a historical event that brought people together and united a country, I could not help but imagine the next “giant leap for mankind.” Would it be the upcoming Orion mission to the Moon and eventually Mars?  Or would it be an international effort to create the very first moon base?  Only time will tell, but one thing I know for certain is that we will rise to any challenge we encounter.  The infinite reaches of space await!

Post by Gavin Syas

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