If you were born after the Apollo program and perhaps remember those days, it seems almost unbelievable that NASA has sent manned missions to the Moon, which is 239,000 miles away. People are still saddened that the Apollo moon missions are so long ago and soon no one is alive who has actually gone to the moon. We celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission. Now is the perfect time to remember – or get to know – the only 12 people who have ever walked on any body other than Planet Earth.
. 1 Neil Armstrong
Neil Armstrong, Marine Test Pilot, Engineer and Veteran of the Korean War, left the Navy in 1
Pilots have no particular pleasure in walking: Pilots like to fly. Pilots are generally proud of a good landing and not about getting out of the vehicle.
Armstrong and his crew were honored with parades, prizes, and recognition upon their return to Earth, but Armstrong always spoke to the entire NASA team for the Apollo Moon missions. He retired from NASA in 1971 and became Professor of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Cincinnati for eight years. Armstrong was a board member of many companies and foundations, but gradually withdrew from promotional tours and autograph sessions. He was not particularly interested in fame.
Neil Armstrong died on August 25, 2012 at the age of 82. His family released a statement that concluded:
"For those who 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 out on a clear night and watch the moon shining on you, think of Neil Armstrong and wink at him. "
. 2 Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin
After Buzz Aldrin had finished third in his class in West Point in 1951 with a degree in natural sciences, he flew as an air force pilot in the Korean War 66 combat missions. He then did his doctorate at MIT. Aldrin joined NASA in 1963 as an astronaut. In 1966, he flew with the space probe Gemini 12 in the last twin mission.
Aldrin accompanied Neil Armstrong on the first moon landing in the Apollo 11 mission and became the second person to be the first of the living astronauts to enter the moon. Aldrin had taken a home-communion set and took the communion on the lunar surface, but did not send it. Aldrin retired in 1971 from NASA and 1972 by the Air Force. Later, he suffered from clinical depression and wrote about the experience, but recovered with the treatment. Aldrin has co-authored five books on his experiences and the space program, as well as two novels. The now 89-year-old Aldrin continues to work for the exploration of space.
3. Charles "Pete" Conrad
Pete Conrad was a graduate and marine test pilot at Princeton before joining the Astronaut Corps in 1962. He flew on the mission Gemini V and was commander of Gemini XI. Conrad was commander of the Apollo 12 mission, which was launched during a thunderstorm, which switched off the power of the command module temporarily shortly after take-off. When Conrad stepped on the moon, he said:
Whoopee! Man, that may have been a small thing for Neil, but for me it's a long one.
Conrad later flew on the Skylab 2 mission as commander with the first crew aboard the space station. He retired from NASA and the Navy in 1973, after which he worked for the American Television and Communications Company and then for McDonnell Douglas.
Pete Conrad died on July 8, 1999 in a motorcycle accident. He was 69 years old.
. 4 Alan L. Bean
Apollo astronaut Alan Bean was the fourth man to walk on the moon during the Apollo 12 mission in 1969. He was the pilot of the lunar module. Bean was also the commander of Skylab Mission II in 1973, who spent 59 days in flight. Overall, Bean logged 1,671 hours and 45 minutes in space. Bean is the only artist who has traveled another world. His images of the lunar environment have the authenticity of an eyewitness. He retired with the rank of Captain from the Navy, but continued to train astronauts at NASA until he retired in 1981 to devote himself to his art.
Bean died on May 26, 2018 at the age of 86 years.
. 5 Alan Shepard
Alan Shepard was a true space pioneer who consolidated his place in history long before the Apollo program. As a test pilot of the US Navy, he was selected in 1959 as one of the original Mercury astronauts. Shepard was the first American who launched on May 5, 1961 on board the spaceship Freedom 7 into space. His suborbital flight reached a height of 116 miles.
] Shepard was banned from flying during the Gemini program due to an inner ear problem. The problem was resolved operationally and he was assigned as commander of the Apollo 14 mission to the moon. He was responsible for the most accurate moon landing ever, spending 9 hours and 17 minutes exploring the lunar surface outside the module. During this time, he hit a pair of golf balls with a six-iron attached to his sampling tool. With one arm (due to the space suit), he managed to continue driving thanks to the lesser gravity of the moon, as professional golfers on Earth could ever hope.
Before and after his Apollo mission, Shepard served as chief of the astronaut office. He retired in 1974 from NASA and the Navy, after he had achieved the rank of Rear Admiral. Shepard went into the private sector and was on the board of several companies and foundations. He founded Seven Fourteen Enterprises, an umbrella company named after his two space missions. Shepard wrote a book with Deke Slayton, Moon Shot: The Insider Story of America's Race to the Moon . Shepard compared his book to The Right Stuff by Tom Wolfe and said, "We wanted to call our book The Real Stuff because it was just fiction."
Alan Shepard died on July 21, 1998 at the age of 74.
. 6 Edgar D. Mitchell
Ed Mitchell joined the Navy in 1952 and became a test pilot. He then received his doctorate in aerospace from MIT. NASA chose him for the 1966 Astronaut Corps. In January 1971, Mitchell flew as the sixth man on the lunar surface with Apollo 14. He retired in 1972 and founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences, which deals with psychic and paranormal events. Mitchell became known after NASA for his views on UFOs, claiming that the government had covered up evidence in Roswell. His information, he admitted, came from various sources.
Mitchell died on 4. February 2016, on the eve of the 45th anniversary of his moon landing.
7. David Scott
David Scott joined the Air Force after graduating West Point. Chosen as an astronaut in 1963, he flew with Neil Armstrong on the Gemini 8 mission and was a command module pilot on Apollo 9. Scott then went on Apollo 15 to the Moon, which landed on July 30, 1971 on the lunar surface the first mission nearby to land from Bergen. Scott and Jim Irwin spent 18 hours exploring the lunar landscape in the Lunar Roving Vehicle when he first traveled the moon on such a vehicle. Scott became famous for the "stamp incident" he unauthorized stamp covers to the Moon with the intention of later selling them. NASA had previously turned a blind eye, but publicity on the matter prompted them to discipline Scott, and he never flew again. Scott retired from NASA in 1977 and worked as a consultant for several films and television programs about the space program. He also wrote a book with the former cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, Two Sides of the Moon: Our Story of the Space Race in the Cold War .
David Scott is 87 years old.
. 8 James B. Irwin
Air Force test pilot James Irwin became an astronaut in 1966. In 1971, he was pilot of the lunar module for Apollo 15. His 18.5 hour exploration of the lunar surface included collecting many rock samples. The health of the astronauts was monitored from Earth and they noticed that Irwin developed symptoms of heart trouble. Because it breathed 100% oxygen, and was less abundant than it was on Earth, mission control was, in the circumstances, in the best possible environment for such irregularities. Irwin's heart rhythm was normal when Apollo 15 returned to Earth, but he had a heart attack a few months later. Irwin retired from NASA and the Air Force (with the rank of colonel) in 1972 and founded the High Flight Foundation to spread the Christian gospel over the last twenty years of his life. He took in particular several groups on expeditions to the mountain. Ararat in search of the Noah's Ark.
James Irwin died on August 8, 1991 from a heart attack. He was 61 years old.
. 9 John Watts Young
John Young is the longest-serving astronaut in NASA history. He was selected as an astronaut in 1962 and his first space flight in 1965 aboard the Gemini 3 with Gus Grissom. He gained some notoriety by smuggling a corned beef sandwich on the plane and angering NASA. Young completed a total of six space missions in the Gemini, Apollo and Space Shuttle programs. He circled the moon in the Apollo 10 mission, then became commander of the Apollo 16 mission and became the ninth person to walk on the moon. Young was commander of the first Space Shuttle flight in 1981 and returned to Shuttle Flight 9 in 1983, using the first Spacelab module. Young was also scheduled for another Space Shuttle flight in 1986, which was delayed after the Challenger Disaster so the experienced astronaut never completed his seventh flight. Young retired from NASA in 2004 after 42 years of service.
John Young died on 5 January 2018 at the age of 87 years as a result of pneumonia.
10th Charles M. Duke Jr.
The astronaut Charles Duke was Capcom during the Apollo 11 mission. He's the voice you remember and says, "Roger, Twank … rest, we'll copy you to the floor, you have some guys that are about to turn blue, we're breathing again, many Thanks!" when the lunar module landed on the moon. Duke also made history by catching German measles as he trained the replacement team for the Apollo 13 mission, exposing the crew to the illness and ensuring that Ken Mattingly was replaced by Jack Swigart on this terrible space flight. Duke went to the Moon in April 1972 (with Mattingly as command module pilot) on the Apollo 16 mission. He retired from NASA in 1975 after attaining the rank of Brigadier General of the US Air Force, and founded Duke Investments. Duke also became a Christian and lay minister for prison inmates.
Charles Duke is 83 years old.
. 11 Harrison "Jack" Schmitt
Jack Schmitt was initially a geologist and was trained as a NASA astronaut pilot. In fact, after Neil Armstrong, who was a veteran at the time of his flights, he was only the second civilian to go into space. Schmitt was commissioned to fly to the moon on the Apollo 18 mission, but when the Apollo 18 and 19 missions were canceled in September 1970, the scientific community advocated that Schmitt Apollo 17 (instead of Joe Engle) act as the Lunar module pilot was assigned. He was the first scientist in space. On the Apollo 17 mission, he and Gene Cernan spent three days on the lunar surface (one record) and drove around with their Lunar Roving Vehicle to collect samples, conduct experiments, and leave behind gauges. Schmitt and Cernan collected 250 pounds of lunar material to take back.
After retiring from NASA in 1975, the Republican Schmitt was elected Senator for New Mexico and served from 1977 to 1983. He became an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin – Madison and lives in Silver City, New Mexico. Dr. Schmitt's scientific background and political focus have brought him to the fore in recent years when he said that the concept of climate change is "a red herring" and that environmentalism is linked to communism.
Jack Schmitt is 84 years old.
12th Eugene E. Cernan
Gene Cernan has completed over 5,000 flight hours as a navy pilot. He was inducted into the astronaut program in 1963. Cernan's first space flight took place in 1966 at Gemini IX, where he performed extraterrestrial activities (a spacewalk), followed by the Apollo 10 mission in May 1969 that orbited the moon. Cernan was appointed Commander of the Apollo 17 mission before anyone knew it would be the last Apollo mission. Even after the Apollo program was discontinued, nobody knew that the journey to the moon would be abandoned for decades. When Schmitt and Cernan boarded their lunar module for the last time on December 13, 1972, Cernan said:
"I am on the surface and, as I make the last human step off the surface, return home for some time Come – but we do not believe too long into the future – I just want to say [say] what I believe history will record – this American challenge of today has forged the destiny of the man of tomorrow and if we have the moon leave at Taurus Littrow, we go as we have come and, God willing, as we will return: with peace and hope for all humanity.Good journey for the crew of Apollo 17. "
Cernan retired in 1976 back from the Navy and NASA. He went on to found an aerospace engineering company and write a book about his astronaut experience. He also brought his talents as commentator on shuttle flights to ABC-TV and appeared in various space specials. In September 2011, Cernan said before the Congress on the future of the space program.
The Space Program has never been a claim, it is an investment in the future – an investment in technology, jobs, international respect and geopolitical leadership, and perhaps most importantly for the inspiration and education of our youth. NASA's best and brightest minds, and many small and large private contractors, did not join the team to design windmills or redesign gas pedals, but to realize their dream of bringing us back to where no human was. 19659005] Gene Cernan died on January 16, 2017.
This story was updated for 2019.