Farewell, Neil Armstrong

The first man to walk the moon

Farewell, Neil Armstrong

Neil Armstrong (1930-2012)

43 years ago, he became the first man to set foot on the moon. Yesterday, Neil Armstrong passed away in an Ohio hospital following surgery complications. He leaves behind a wife, two kids and a giant leap for humanity: a small step which affected the entire human race
Tal Michael

Neil Armstrong began his involvement with outer space 50 years ago. At the age of 32, the experienced navy pilot and graduate of aeronautical engineering studies joined the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). At first, he operated as an experimental pilot and as he gained more experience was promoted to key positions within the organization.

Armstrong reached his first milestone as the leading pilot in operation ‘Gemini 8’. An error occurred in the acceleration system of the spaceship seconds before the launching, which could have endangered the lives of the entire staff. Armstrong was able to control the spinning spaceship and land in peace.

Two years later, Neil Armstrong got an opportunity he had never even dreamed of, a chance so desired only few believed it could actually be accomplished. On July 20th,1969 he landed on the moon and was named the first man in history to set foot on the distant planet. “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.” He said in the communication device a moment before uttering one of the world’s most famous quotes: “That’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind”.

After placing the American flag on the moon, he returned to earth with the crew and retired from Space and Aviation operations. “Before landing I didn’t even think of what to say, it just happened–we had accomplished our main goal”, said Armstrong in an emotional reunion of the spaceship’s team a few years back. “I wasn’t excited about the walk itself. We were so excited due to the fact that everything went well and that we were able to land properly. Also, the walk was an ethereal experience. I think our biggest accomplishment was the idea or understanding that humans aren’t bound to earth”.

“I would love to experience your future”

Throughout the year, many doubts have been uttered about that first landing on the moon. “Who took a photo of Neil Armstrong if he was the first man to land?” is only one of many questions raised about the whole scenario which Armstrong had had to deal with for years. “I tried not to give too much importance to those questions”, he said in an interview several months ago. “People love stories and theories and I have answered what they wanted to hear with much humanity”.

In the year of 2007, Armstrong made his first visit in Israel, and conversed with children at the science museum of Haifa. “How did you manage to get back to earth after everything you’ve experienced?” asked one of the children, and the senior pilot held the child’s hand and answered emotionally: “There are big challenges down here on earth. There are many significant problems and challenges that we have to overcome. I would love to experience your future”.