Neil Armstrong, First Man to Walk on Moon, Dead at 82 |
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Neil Armstrong, First Man to Walk on Moon, Dead at 82 August 28, 2012

by Kayla Iacovino , Filed under: History , trackback

It is with a heavy heart that we post here on TrekMovie the passing of a worldwide hero, Neil Armstrong. He passed away after complications from heart surgery, his family told the press. Here’s to Neil Armstrong: first man on the moon, American astronaut, engineer, university professor, US Navy pilot, test pilot, self-proclaimed nerd, inspiration, and symbol of the golden era of space exploration. Rest in Peace and god speed.


And so comes the end of an era…
Or perhaps, the beginning of a new one. Neil Armstrong was an icon. His famous words after the Eagle safely landed on the lunar surface will echo through time. As the first man to walk on the moon dies, we are reminded that times are changing. One can only hope that human space exploration will one day be as progressive and exciting as it was during the Apollo era.

Updates and More Information
TrekMovie will not be following this story, and we ask that discussions about Neil’s passing take place in the comments section of this article. For updates from Neil’s family and more information about his legacy and his death, please see these sources:

Links Submitted by Readers

Oreo pays homage to Armstrong with this image and tweet
via Andrew Britton

Apollo 11 Video via Mark Lynch


Editor’s note: As some of you are undoubtedly aware, I did not want to write this article. For me, my words mean little in the wake of this event. While Armstrong’s death was not necessarily a shock given that he died at the age of 82, it nonetheless has a significant impact on me. As someone inspired by Armstrong as a child, I felt I was too deeply affected to write a meaningful piece on his life and death.
I made no attempt to write an homage to him. But, outcry from the lack of any acknowledgement of the event made me realize that I needed to post an article to simply show TrekMovie’s respect. I apologize if any of you were offended that it took us this long (days) to post about Neil’s death on TM. Please know that we meant no disrespect. It was out of fear, sorrow, and, indeed, the utmost respect that I originally decided not to post. Let this post serve as a place where we can discuss the event, and I will try and keep it updated with links that you readers submit in the comments. Thanks.



1. The ste - August 28, 2012

I was wondering why it wasn’t mentioned but now I understand. I too felt heartbroken at the loss of a true hero.

Rip mr Armstrong

2. Rod of Rassilon - August 28, 2012

Fly far Neil


3. Jerry Modene - August 28, 2012

I can’t find the link any more, but Armstrong made an apperance at James Doohan’s last public appearance (was that when Jimmy got his star?). Neil, a former engineer, told Doohan, “From one old engineer to another, thanks, mate!”

Rather unfairly, Neil took a lot of criticism for not going out and “selling the program” after he left NASA. Mike Collins addressed that issue in his 1973 autobiography, noting that as the first human being to set foot on another planet, Neil was going to be a unique individual for the rest of his life, and he needed to apportion himself accordingly.

(If you can get a copy of that book, it’s a good one: “Carrying The Fire”.

4. soundtrekker - August 28, 2012

R.I.P.! You truly were an inspiration for humankind, Neil!

5. Lt. Dakin - August 28, 2012

I read “Carrying the Fire” in junior high, and a couple of times since. Very well done. Best place to look might be your local library if you can’t find it for sale anywhere. Thanks for mentioning it, Jerry. Brings back memories.

6. rm10019 - August 28, 2012

A true pioneer.

And with this article Trekmovie takes one small leap for man, one giant leap for the whiners who berate the people who actually provide quality content to this site.

7. Kayla Iacovino - August 28, 2012

@rm10019 – I don’t like to be giving into “whiners”, but I realize that me NOT posting this in the first place gave some people the wrong impression, and I wanted to right that.

8. James Cannon - Runcorn Trekkie UK - August 28, 2012

He’s returned to the stars… RIP Neil Armstrong.

And special thanks to Kayla for posting this article… Thank you.

9. Montreal_Paul - August 28, 2012

@ 7. Kayla Iacovino

Very well written piece, Kayla. Thank you for sharing.

As for the whiners… they will always find something to whine about. I’m sorry you felt you (and Trekmovie) had defend yourself against them.

10. rm10019 - August 28, 2012

7 – I understand and thanks for your time and contributions here, as always, they are truly appreciated.

11. Mark Lynch - August 28, 2012

I think you said perfectly enough Kayla. Thanks for posting this.

Hopefully everyone can keep a civil tongue in their head about you and Trekmovie when posting.

Thought this particular video might be appropriate… :)

12. Uberbot - August 28, 2012

RIP to a TRUE American hero and pioneer!! The one who truly had “gone where no man had gone before”. Now he’s gone off to the true “final frontier”.

13. Greg Stamper - August 28, 2012

A Hero in every sense of the word. A Man I’ve looked up to my entire life. Godspeed.

14. Spockboy - August 28, 2012

I agree, a TRUE HERO.
RIP Neil.

15. Starfleet's Finest - August 28, 2012

@ Kayla Iacovino

Very well done and nicely said. I’m sure we all felt the same loss and despair, but I’m sorry that you and the Trekmovie crew were called out on it. I applaud your candor and in no way did you “give in” to the whiners :) Good on ya.

Its all been said about such a great man but it bears to be repeated: God speed sir. May your soul ever soar among the stars and heavens.

16. R Greene - August 28, 2012

Thanks for accepting the daunting task of memorializing the passing of one of history’s greatest explorers. I believe Neil Armstrong represented not only what’s best about America, but what’s best about mankind. We are all blessed to have lived during the Age of Armstrong, and see him step into history on the surface of the moon. He was an inspiration to all the people of earth, and especially so to Trek fans, because he represented what we could be at our best.

P.S. The Trek community lost a favorite member last week with the passing of actor William Windom, aka Commodore Matt Decker of “The Doomsday Machine.” I was disappointed that Trek Movie failed to note his passing.

17. Rick Gastiger - August 28, 2012

Rest in Heaven neil,you are defently up in the sky,Thanks for the wonderful memories and you”ll be never forgotten.

18. George - August 28, 2012

I really think we need to have a national holiday for him as an example to all people what it truely is to be an American and what you can achive for the benifit of mankind.

19. Daoud - August 28, 2012

@Kayla: Thank you for expressing the thoughts many of us share with you about Armstrong….

May it ever go forth that the exact transcript of what he said really was:
“A small step for a man, a giant leap for mankind.”

I’m so glad to see that the media in general has been putting forward the quote as he said it, and not how it heard transmitted by primitive technology of 1969 that dropped moments due to interference and relay timing.

@3. Jerry, thank you for noting that about him. I was always impressed that unlike some of the later Apollo astronauts, he never looked for ‘side deals’ or ‘things to take along’, etc. When I’ve had a chance through the years to talk with Dr. Jack Schmitt at conferences…. the reverence with which all the fellow astronauts held Armstrong is telling.

An interesting note…. (because Dr. Schmitt will point this out if a speaker calls him the only civilian to land on the moon), that Armstrong had already retired from the service long before the moon landing… so as it turns out that the first foot on the moon was that of a civilian! Armstrong was a veteran at that point, not in the military.

20. Mark Lynch - August 28, 2012

Perhaps it would be even more fitting if there was a global holiday date set aside for Neil Armstrong.

Especially as the Lunar plaque says, “We came in peace for all Mankind”

It seems fitting to me that he should be remembered on a Worldwide scale.

21. Daoud - August 28, 2012

@17 I think Armstrong would have advocated against a national holiday for him. He would probably have suggested honoring others such as the 9/11 victims. The family expresses that the best way to honor him is this:

“For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request. Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink.”

22. Emperor Mike of the Empire - August 28, 2012

Thank you Kayla for a beautifully written Article.
Neil is Really not dead. As long as we remember him.

23. George - August 28, 2012

@19 & @20, All good points, it would be interesting to try and pull off a worldwide holiday. As for a holiday for the victimes of 9/11 I’m not oppsed to that, but that is remembering a tragic event in our and world historyand the cruelty of man against man.

But a holiday to celebrate one of the few times in human history where the world was as one not only will that honor Neil Armstrong but also pay tribute to the memory of Gene Roddenbery and his vision of man reaching for the stars in peace.

24. Chris Doohan - August 28, 2012

My dad and I met Mr. Armstrong at the “Beam me up, Scotty, one last time” event exactly 8 years ago today. My dad was beaming when he met him. I was so happy to see that my dad was able to meet one of his heroes.

25. James - August 28, 2012

I have seen calendars that call 9/11 “Patriot’s Day.” Not something I am endorsing, just noting.

26. Red Dead Ryan - August 28, 2012

Thanks Kayla! Really appreciate this!

Neil Armstrong will always be a legend. One of the greatest human beings ever. Considering his accomplishments, his humility was astounding. Certainly a role model for all of us, and for all time.

He will be missed, but he will also be remembered and cherished.

What a great man.

27. George - August 28, 2012

Hey Chris,

Gald to hear it, I can tell you that when I had the chance to meet your dad not only at conventions but on the lot during the filming of ST III, IV he was such a nice person to be able to sit down and talk to, it was nice to be able for me to meet one of my hero’s as well. I’m glad to see you taking over the Scotty role in these fan productions looking forward to them.

28. Brett Campbell - August 28, 2012

A true hero. I feel so fortunate to have been born in the era that I was and to watch him walk on the moon when I was only nine.

RIP Dr. Armstrong. Thank you for your inspiration.

29. Charles Root - August 28, 2012

I wonder how many people have looked up at the moon this week and given it a wink?

30. Horatio - August 28, 2012

The first human to walk on another world. That is such an amazing accomplishment. He deserves a national day of mouring, laying in state at the capitol, and countless number of schools named after him.

I respect his modesty in his post Apollo life. Though I would have preferred he used his celebrity to promote space exploration I am still in awe of his integrity.

More than an American hero. A hero for all mankind.

31. Techtrekker - August 28, 2012

#23 – Thanks for sharing Chris!

Godspeed Dr. Armstrong. Thank you for your strength and courage.

32. Sunspot - August 28, 2012

I count it as a privelage that I had the opportunity to see Neil Armstrong in person in 2005. Neil was a very quiet man who shied away from the spotlight, but when asked to speak at the Veteran’s Day Memorial in Gettysburg in 2005 Neil welcomed the opportunity. Neil did not speak m=of his own amazing accomplishments, but instead praised those veterans who have served this country in war and peace and were wounded or gave their life for their country. The wounded veterans who were present that day beamed with joy to be able to shake the hand of an American Hero like Neil Armstrong, but Neil made it clear to them that he was the one proud to shake the hands of those wounded veterans.

Neil Armstrong was a true hero and a role model to millions (including me). He will be missed. His passing marks the end of an era.

33. cd - August 28, 2012

Thanks Kayla. Good job.

34. cd - August 28, 2012

Rest In Peace Neil Armstrong.



35. Thorny - August 28, 2012

For those interested in reading more about Mr. Armstrong and Apollo, I recommend the following titles…

A MAN ON THE MOON by Andrew Chakin

Note… The President has ordered flags flown at half-staff on Friday, August 31, the day or Mr. Armstrong’s funeral.

36. Dominic - August 28, 2012

Wonderful article. Thank you, Kayla.

37. JeFF - August 28, 2012

Absolutely thrilled to see this posted here Kayla…. in a forum where many of us can truly call this American hero an inspiration.

I am too young to have been around when Armstrong first stepped out onto the moon, and in a way, I envy those that were around to see it.

In an age when wonderment and exploration…. the human need to evolve and push the boundaries of what is known were all things celebrated and encouraged. Neil Armstrong was a true pioneer of that spirit, and in that, I mourn his passing.

Many of us here keep his inspiration alive by being heralds of that very spirit ourselves, telling the story of a man who refused to be known as a legend, but in every sense really was.

For you, Neil Armstrong…. not even the sky was the limit.

38. Craiger - August 28, 2012

Little late on this news.

39. Craiger - August 28, 2012

Sorry, that he is gone, which I knew about this past weekend, but this is another reason why Trekmovie is not becoming reliable source for news anymore. Articles get posted late and by the time they are posted they are old news.

40. Gary S. - August 28, 2012

Thank you Kayla.
And, I really appreaciate your sharing what this news means to you.
And thank you Mr.Armstrong .
You have my Eternal gratitude ,
For all your contributions to our past and our future.
And , for handling it all with humility and class.

41. Chris Roberts - August 28, 2012

I didn’t equate the lack of any kind of article, with disrespect.

Trekmovie reporters give their time freely and shouldn’t feel pressured into contributing. I’m sure we all spared a thought for this particular legend’s passing, reacting to the news on TV and online, and will continue to do so with documentary tributes yet to come.


R.I.P. Mr. Armstrong.

You made that giant leap on behalf of all of us.

42. Scott McC - August 28, 2012


Thanks for posting. I was very sorry to hear the news late Saturday evening here in the UK. Neil Armstrong will never be forgotten and he is an inspiration to engineers, scientists and explorers everywhere.

I was also struck by both you and the editors words regarding the difficulties in covering this event. Thank you for your considered and considerate response.

43. Holger - August 28, 2012

Giant loss for mankind. RIP Neil Armstrong.

44. Lt. Bailey - August 28, 2012

I remember that day very well as an 11year old kid when he walked on the moon with the grainey B/W television transmission. But it still held me captive as to what was going on over 200,000 + miles away. The most pivital moment in human history and our greatest achviement.

He now took another step and walks with God.

45. rm10019 - August 28, 2012

38 – “by the time they are posted they are old news” … sort of like your gripes… :) I kid, I kid!

I would love a ship named after Armstrong in the new movie, if not a dedication of the film to him and his pioneering spirit.

46. Jai - August 28, 2012

Sorry if this has already been suggested on another thread (I haven’t read all the recent comments yet), but maybe the next Star Trek movie should include a dedication to Neil Armstrong, displayed at the start of the movie or just before the end credits.

Something along the lines of “Dedicated to Neil Armstrong (1930-2012), the first human to step onto the final frontier. May his dignity, humility and courage always serve as an example to all mankind”.

Something like that. I’m sure Bob Orci could write a better dedication.

47. Vultan - August 28, 2012


No need for a better dedication, Jai. That’s perfect. Well done.

And as for Dr. Armstrong, I can’t say anything but… though I was born after his “small step,” he was a hero of mine. A man of service who saw the worst of mankind in war and demonstrated the best of mankind in the peaceful exploration of the heavens.

And exploring still.

48. Ciaran - August 28, 2012

RIP Neil Armstrong.

He took one small step from this life and made his giant leap into the Final Frontier.

49. MAX - August 28, 2012

He should immediately replace someone on our money. No commemorative coin, either, a major bill. He’s arguably the most extraordinary man in history.

50. Stargazer54 - August 28, 2012

Very sad news indeed. As a kid I watched Armstrong’s first step on the moon along with Walter Cronkite’s commentary I thought that we had finally made it. We really had become a space-faring nation. I don’t think I had missed a launch since Gemini. And as the Apollo years unfolded, I was convinced that we would be in the space business from then on out.

The passing of Neil hits especially hard when you realize that all the treasure and intellectual power that put him (and Buzz Aldrin) there was squandered and mismanaged by the short sighted and the greedy.

Our heroes are passing. (BTW, we lost Sally Ride this year, as well.) Other heroes in the course of their duty were lost on the Challenger, the Columbia and Apollo 1.

It used to be kids looked up to astronauts. Nowadays, its NASCAR drivers. Something’s wrong with the picture Walter.

51. Sid - August 28, 2012

RIP, the last American hero

52. jay - August 28, 2012

Thank you for posting something. It’s not always easy, but these things need to be said as part of our shared (human) conversation.

53. MJ - August 28, 2012


54. MJ - August 28, 2012

RIP Neil Armstrong….the best of America….the reluctant and graceful hero….a pilot who has ice in his veins.

55. n1701ncc - August 28, 2012

I was 6 yrs old when man landed on the moon. It was such a special time to be kid. Yes it was the crazy 60’s and yes there was much to rebel against but I was a kid with Apollo rocket model and loved it. I remember looking out my apartment window thinking I could see the flag that was on the moon [lol]. 3 months later the Mets won the WS in 1969. I was fortunate to see 2 ticker tape parades one for the men landing on the moon and the other for the Mets . It was a great time watching the TV. Watching Walter Cronkite talk about how important the moon landing was. I thought by now we would be reaching for the stars with a Moon colony , Mars landings and space travel for everyone. Yes I was naive kid but Neil Armstrong made me dream and believe in the stars. RIP Neil

56. Craiger - August 28, 2012

Sorry, I didn’t mean to be mean in my last post just getting tired of these late news reports.

57. Allister - August 28, 2012

I was on holiday woth my parents in Pittenween in Fife Scotland I was 10 and still remember to this day watching the moon walk with great awe and excitement taking pictures of the tv screen with my black and white Kodak instimatic camera
To this day I still have the pictures… RIP Mr Armstrong

58. Hat Rick - August 28, 2012

I ask the indulgence of the site owner for the following reposting of my message of August 26, 2012.

Please note that I referred to “Dr. Armstrong” in the original; a more proper honorific is “Professor Armstrong” and the following reflects that correction.


I am in a sad frame of mind today.

So soon after the passing of Sally Ride, Neil Armstrong, one of America’s true heroes, left our planet — this time, forever.

This sadness is something that the passage of time will ease; soon, our minds will be preoccupied with other things. But history will never forget the name, “Armstrong,” and neither should we.

I realize that I am only one of many voices mourning the loss of Professor Armstrong, a great man who did great things, and yet wanted nothing in return.

I realize that there are millions who harken back to the halcyon days when space seemed so full of promise.

I realize that there are many who wish we were farther advanced along humanity’s path to the stars.

And I am still saddened to know that Prof. Armstrong never got to see humanity set foot on another planet.

If there is any justice in the universe, the world would take heed of his passing, not only to build monuments to the man, but to build the means to leave our planet and land on another. To colonize the planets, and then the stars.

If there is any justice in the universe, Prof. Armstrong would be remembered not only by his accomplishment, but by the fulfillment of his dreams.

A small boy in Ohio grew up to be the only man to be the first to set foot on the Moon.

We remember and mourn the loss of a great American — and most of all, a great human being.

Who can, or will, follow in his footsteps?

59. CmdrR - August 28, 2012

Thank you, Neil Armstrong.

And thank you, Kayla, for posting this. And don’t worry about falling short in your desire to honor the man. He, of anyone, knew how to speak plainly and say a lot.

I have a favorite quote from Neil Armstrong. I read “Rocket Men” by Craig Nelson about a year ago. These words struck me then, and now, as a bona fide formula for leadership and success. I invite folks to let Neil Armstrong speak:

“I was certainly aware that this was a culmination of the work of 300,000 or 400,000 people over a decade and that the nation’s hopes and outward appearance largely rested on how the results came out. With those pressures, it seemed the most important thing to do was focus on our job as best we were able to and try to allow nothing to distract us from doing the very best job we could. And, you know, I have no complaints about the way my colleagues were able to step up to that. …

Each of the components of our hardware were designed to certain reliability specifications, and for the majority, to my recollection, had a reliability requirement of 0.99996, which means that you have four failures in 100,000 operations. I’ve been told that if every component met its reliability specifications precisely, that a typical Apollo flight would have about [1,000] separate identifiable failures. In fact, we had more like 150 failures per flight, better than statistical methods would tell you that you might have. I can only attribute that to the fact that every guy in the project, every guy at the bench building something, every assembler, every inspector, every guy that’s setting up the tests, cranking the torque wrench, and so on, is saying, man or woman, “If anything goes wrong here, it’s not going to be my fault, because my part is going to be better than I have to make it.” And when you have hundreds of thousands of people all doing their job a little better than they have to, you get an improvement in performance. And that’s the only reason we could have pulled this whole thing off.

When I was working here at the Manned Spacecraft Center, you could stand across the street and you could not tell when quitting time was, because people didn’t leave at quitting time in those days. People just worked, and they worked until whatever their job was done, and if they had to be there until five o’clock or seven o’clock or nine-thirty or whatever it was, they were just there. They did it, and then they went home. So four o’clock or four-thirty, whenever the bell rings, you didn’t see anybody leaving. Everybody was still working.

The way that happens and the way that made it different from other sectors of the government to which some people are sometimes properly critical is that this was a project in which everybody involved was, one, interested, two, dedicated, and, three, fascinated by the job they were doing. And whenever you have those ingredients, whether it be government or private industry or a retail store, you’re going to win.”

60. Starbase Britain - August 28, 2012


i dont think you could have put that any better. a lovely explanation which came from the heart as to why there was no initial coverage of this event. We thank you.
RIP neil Armstrong – a hero the world can be proud of. An inspiration of millions.


61. sean - August 28, 2012


Neil admitted he said it wrong on several occasions, and his official position was that the ‘a’ should appear in parenthesis in any quotation. It’s of little importance either way, as the quote (right or wrong) has become part of popular culture and history. Either way, Neil will be forever remembered as the first human to place his feet on the surface of an alien world, not for dropping an a. :)

62. Douglas - August 28, 2012

The name Neil Armstrong will be remembered as long anyone who has ever lived. I’ve been so inspired by him throughout my life in may ways. He was a man of courage, intelligence and had the kind of personality that handled world-wide fame with great dignity and earned respect from everyone.

I was watching the Sunday morning news shows this past weekend and one of the commentators drew a comparison between the attitude toward space exploration in the 60’s as opposed to today. She said how interesting it was to note that in the 60’s space exploration was considered by the public to be a great, fun and important endeavor. While today if a political candidate mentions it they are ridiculed.

I know priorities have changed and we must deal with issues here on earth for both practical and humanitarian reasons. However, we need to be inspired and awed by space exploration. It needs to have a permanent place in our human condition. I am grateful we will always have the legacy of Neil Armstrong to remind us how possible it is to reach for the stars.

63. Tomh, Esq. - August 28, 2012

@34 – I’d also recommend two lesser known, but equally instructive books on the history of Apollo:

Digital Apollo, by David A. Mindell; and Moon Lander, by Thomas J Kelley

64. This is going to be a long year - August 28, 2012


Thank you for the article.

I think a majority of the site’s visitors appreciate all the hard work that has gone into this website from you, Anthony and the other contributors over the years.

The sense of community on this site, especially in the chat section, is why many people keep visiting.

65. David G. - August 28, 2012

The Spokesman Review — the newspaper in Spokane, Washington — had the hands-down perfect headline on the front of its edition last Sunday morning:

“One Giant Loss”

66. Phil - August 28, 2012

Thank you, Kayla. Don’t underestimate the power of words, in a forum such as this they provide much needed perspective.

67. Chingatchkook - August 28, 2012

Re: ‘Editor’s note’

Probably one of the better tributes that I’ve read. Thanks Anthony.

68. Zenko - August 28, 2012

The first of us to step on another world, there will be a first person to Mars, and hopefully other places. Neil Armstrong was the first human to set foot on dirt not of the Earth. Brave enough to move passed fear, strong enough to to take all of our hopes and dreams to the moon. Thanks Neil and to all of the people who have risked themselves to take us one more step into the future.

69. Khan was Framed! - August 28, 2012

I bet they faked his death at a sound studio in Area 51.

Someone check the way the sun’s light makes shadows on the corpse!

i smell a conspiracy.

70. NCM - August 28, 2012

I bet I’m among the majority of Americans in that I never delved deeply into Armstrong’s life and most noted accomplishment. Clearly, to reach such heights, he must have had intelligence, work ethic, and good luck in abundance: but watching a moon landing documentary at Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry, recently, I was astonished by the magnitude of courage the man had, and it was called forth more in the moments before the landing than when he took that giant leap for the rest of us.

Neil Armstrong was the real life Captain Kirk, successfully landing the Eagle with only 17 seconds of fuel left, while out of communication with NASA, alarms going off, unrehearsed scenarios taking place, knowing NASA was considering aborting the mission–but taking the choice into his own hands. The few other documentaries I’ve seen overlook the real excitement and risk of that landing.

BTW, if you have a chance to see this exhibit, it’s well worthwhile.

71. Red Dead Ryan - August 28, 2012

One has to wonder where Star Trek would be without Neil Armstrong stepping out on the moon. Yeah, it TOS lasted three seasons up until just before the landing, but you got to figure the moon landing rose the profile of Trek immensely in the ’70’s. Trek got people interested in outer space, and the moon landing probably got more people into Trek.

72. MC1 Doug - August 28, 2012

RIP, Mr. Armstrong. Each time I look up at the moon I will remember you and your brethren’s bravery.

73. Sebastian S. - August 28, 2012

RIP, Neil Armstrong.
A hero for the whole of humanity.

I met his ‘wingman’ Buzz Aldrin a couple of times, but I always held out some, distant, remotest hope that one day I’d get to meet Armstrong too. Sadly, that’ll never be.

First Ray Bradbury (my favorite author), Dr. Sally Ride and now the first human to set foot on another world… a very sad day indeed. Such a humble man, too; went back to Ohio and became a teacher. Never tried to capitalize on his fame. He was the exact opposite of all the so-called ‘celebrities’ of this age; who do nothing at all of merit and expect to be fawned over for it.

Armstrong was a classy guy. One of a kind. ;-)

74. Vultan - August 28, 2012

Some people say Armstrong was shy for largely avoiding the spotlight after Apollo, but I think there was a more practical reason for this: Charles Lindbergh.

After “Lucky Lindy” landed in Paris in 1927, his name was known around the world, and the ensuing media frenzy would eventually reveal some less-than-heroic aspects of his life and the kidnapping and death of his infant son. I can’t help but suspect Armstrong was determined, whether consciously or not, to keep the same thing from happening to him and his family after splashdown.

A smart man in more ways than one.
Rest in peace.

75. Vultan - August 28, 2012

Correction: “…aspects of his life and CAUSED the kidnapping…”

By the way, I’m not suggesting Armstrong had anything to hide. I’m just saying he probably saw the hell Lindbergh had gone through, and rightfully wanted to avoid the spotlight as much as he could.

76. Jerry Modene - August 28, 2012

Vultan, that’s a very good point.

And Chris, thanks for confirming the Neil-Jimmy meeting. I wish I could have found the link, which IIRC had a pic or two of their meeting.

77. subatoi - August 28, 2012

When I read the statement of the family, especially its last part:

I recalled this great song, by DS9’s James Darren/Vic Fontaine:

I got to see him and shake his hand at “Beam me up Scotty, last one time”. I’m gratefull for the whole event, the people I met, including Mr. Armstrong.

78. Marja - August 28, 2012

The best ways we could commemorate Neil Armstrong would be to

1 – honor the contributions of all teachers of sciences and engineering by decently funding these subjects in our public schools and encouraging our children and teachers in every way to achieve mastery in this knowledge, to be inspired and inspire others in turn;

2 – to ensure that all American schoolchildren are educated in actual, real science;

3 – to fund NASA and space exploration by the *people* of the US, – corporations, not so much (I just have a bad feeling about private concerns venturing into space)

4 – to hold the potential achievements of humankind always in mind and not give in to despair

5 – and, as Mr Armstrong’s family suggested, to look up and give the moon (and Neil) a wink.

Thank you, sir, for inspiring generations. Enjoy the heavens.

79. StevenPDX - August 29, 2012

I’ll add my voice as well. I remember sitting glued to the TV with the rest of my family watching those first steps on the moon. Like so many others, I idolized Neil Armstrong and he was a hero to me in the true sense of the word.

Thank you for the article, Kayla, and for sharing openly what so many of us feel: a profound sense of loss and sadness. I commend your courage.

Thanks also to Chris Doohan. Sharing a little piece of your family history with the rest of us is greatly appreciated.

80. Vultan - August 29, 2012


I wholeheartedly agree with your point of increased funding to NASA, but don’t really see the concern in corporations’ involvement. After all, they’ve been involved from the get-go. I mean, who do you think builds those rockets and spacecraft? There is no Department of Grumman or Boeing or subcommittee on lunar modules in DC last time I checked.

Private enterprise getting in on the action is really no different than their getting in on other things established by the government—you know, like the internet….

81. shamelord - August 29, 2012

Dear Kayla, I totally understand how you feel. Those were my feelings too. Thank you for the article. I was born four years after Armstrong’s small step on the moon. Yet it means so much to me to be born after that era started. All the Nasa people from these times are heroes and of course Neil Armstrong was their pall-bearer. The “One giant loss for mankind” headline is an understatement, but so fitting. RIP Neil Armstrong.

82. Chris M - August 29, 2012

A very sad loss, Neil Armstong was a brave, noble and humble hero to the world.

R.I.P. Neil Armstrong

83. Brixton - August 29, 2012

Anthony very nice comments. I too felt hesitant to post anything- Armstrong was such a very humble man, always downplaying his role in what he considered his country’s success. But his passing is that of man and of a time and of a source of great inspiration. Tough to handle.

A drawing:

84. TrekMadeMeWonder - August 29, 2012

As a military man, Neil upheld his part of the “deal” very well.

85. La Reyne d'Epee - August 29, 2012

He was a very special man, and I’m so sad he’s gone.

86. Charla - August 29, 2012

Thanks Kayla for your honesty and integrity. A fine job on the article. Thanks also to the posters here for sharing your memories of a new era, an exciting time that only your generation were able to anxiously wait, watch and finally share in the moment with each other.

87. Sebastian S. - August 29, 2012

# 76


I agree with most of your post (good points for the most part), except for the funding of NASA to the exclusion of private aerospace companies.

I think the private sector should be taking the initiative. Look at the success of Space X’s Dragon capsule rendezvous with the space station? Or Spaceship One and the Ansari X-prize?

It stimulates the economy and it makes space careers for non-government folks as well. It also paves the way for the day when anyone will be able to taste space adventure, and not just the super rich or trained government pilots and scientists. I see a future where private companies build the hardware and do most of the day-to-day space flying chores, with NASA overseeing it in sort of an FAA kind of way. It would also free NASA up for more exciting missions beyond earth orbit, or for deeper robotic probes of the solar system (and beyond, maybe?).

Space does belong to the people (you’re absolutely right, Marja) and companies like Space X, Virgin Galactic or XCOR are trying to make it happen for all of us. If we all just sit and wait for major governments to do all the work? The widespread ‘democratization’ of space will never happen. Imagine if the government still ran all basic air travel today? You’d never be able to afford a ticket….

88. TrekMadeMeWonder - August 29, 2012



I wonder. Has there ever been a recreation of the event on film?

I do not recall one.

Sounds like a good next movie for Nolan and co.

89. Sebastian S. - August 29, 2012

# 86


Check out Tom Hanks’ “From the Earth to the Moon” miniseries from 1998 (based on Andrew Chaikin’s “Man On the Moon” book). The Apollo 11 episode did a pretty good job dramatizing the mission…

90. Thorny - August 29, 2012

86… There was a mediocre movie “Apollo 11″ on Family Channel or something like it in 1995, not long after the hit “Apollo 13″. Jeffrey Nordling portrayed Neil Armstrong.

As Sebastian noted, HBO’s miniseries “From the Earth to the Moon” covered it in the episode “Mare Tranquilitatus” a few years after that. Tony Goldwyn portrayed Neil Armstrong, who also features in the pilot episode, with a terrific sequence about the Gemini 8 near-disaster.
FTETTM’s episode is pretty good, but really needed to focus more on the flight and less on Buzz Aldrin whining about who goes out first, and ended too soon. Still, the second half of the episode, with the landing, is just riveting. FTETTM is twelve episodes: siz are great, two are bad, and the others are so-so.

91. TrekMadeMeWonder - August 30, 2012

Thanks guys! Saw them on the ol’ Utube last night. Still way amazing!

I liken the whole mission to a trip in a diving bell.

It’s like saying you are going to go to the bottom of the deepest ocean and once your’re halfway there, you separate your diving bells and then travel around the world underwater, land on the bottom of the ocean, and then get out and swim around way under the sea for 10 HOURS, return to the bell and then liftoff again, and then carefully navigate back and link-up to the second submersed bell, and then surface without the bends.

You have to admit, it all still way hard to believe that it all really happened so well.

Almost like the 1st season of Trek. There must have been a lot of dreamers in the ’60s.


92. Kirk - August 30, 2012

He always rigorously denied that the moon landing was faked. Strangely, on his death bed his final words were “I was Bigfoot.”

93. The Director - August 30, 2012

Of all the science & historical stuff I’ve seen over the years, I’ve never seen FTETTM. I’ll have to go out & buy it, and of course drink a beer for Neil Armstrong when the actor portraying him steps out of the lunar lander.

94. Thorny - September 1, 2012

“From the Earth to the Moon” is twelve one-hour episodes:

1. “Can We Do This?” – Alan Shepard (Ted Levine) makes America’s first manned spaceflight. Kennedy announces the goal of landing man on the Moon by 1970. NASA begins the enormous task of assembling the people, tools and skills needed to accomplish that goal.

2. “Apollo 1″ – Disaster at Launch Pad 34 kills astronauts Grissom, White and Chaffee, impacts different people in different ways, and puts the entire manned space program in political jeopardy.

3. “We Have Cleared The Tower” – NASA picks up the pieces from Apollo 1 as Wally Schirra (Mark Harmon) prepares to lead America back into space with the flight of Apollo 7.

4. “1968” – The tumultuous year of 1968 ends on the hopeful note of humanity’s first flight to another world, the epic Christmas voyage of Apollo 8.

5. “Spider” – Grumman engineers and NASA astronauts struggle for years to make the complex Apollo Lunar Module ready for its first manned flight on Apollo 9.

6. “Mare Tranquilitatis” – Personal demons, personality conflicts, heavy training schedules, and intense media attention threaten to interfere with Apollo 11, mankind’s first expedition to the surface of the Moon.

7. “That’s All There Is” – With the pressure of meeting Kennedy’s deadline gone, the crew of Apollo 12 flies an entirely different kind of mission to the Moon.

8. “We Interupt This Program” – As the public begins losing interest in Apollo, the national media brings in new reporters with new ways of doing their job, and the old guard newsmen and pushed aside just as the life-or-death struggle of Apollo 13 begins.

9. “For Miles and Miles” – Grounded due to an inner ear disease since his Mercury flight, Alan Shepard recovers enough to fly to the Moon as commander of Apollo 14.

10. “Galileo Was Right” – With Apollo being cut short, scientists and astronauts join forces to make the most of the remaining flights, beginning with Apollo 15 and its first use of the Lunar Rover.

11. “The Original Wives Club” – The intense training and media schedules of flying to the Moon has a devastating affect on many astronaut’s marriages.

12. “Le Voyage Dans La Lune” – The end of the Apollo program is interposed with scenes from George Melies’ landmark 1902 film “A Trip to the Moon”.

95. TrekMadeMeWonder - September 3, 2012

That’s One small step for a man,

96. TrekMadeMeWonder - September 3, 2012

One giant leap for Mankind.

97. TrekMadeMeWonder - September 3, 2012

Thank you, Neil Armstrong!

98. Space Monkey - September 5, 2012

Thanks Neil! You’re my Hero!

99. Mark Lynch - September 6, 2012

Interview of Neil Armstrong with Patrick Moore on “The Sky at Night” in 1970
BTW “The Sky at Night” is still running, which probably makes it the longest running astronomy program in the World.

100. Mark Lynch - September 6, 2012

Neil Armstrong tribute to Apollo 12

101. TrekMadeMeWonder - September 7, 2012

WOW! Neil, you survived a week on this page with a real mention of moon fakery!

Oh well, you deserve a good rest.

Seriously! Rest in peace. But I would prefer that you do not rest at the bottom of the ocean. Who asked for that?

102. Basement Blogger - September 20, 2012

God speed Neil Armstrong. Stephen Colbert does a salute to Neil and channels Star Trek. is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.