Happy Birthday Neil Armstrong
Happy Birthday Neil Armstrong
Neil Alden Armstrong was born on August 5, 1930, near Wapakoneta, Ohio.
The oldest of three children, Armstrong took an early interest in aviation when he took his first plane ride at the age of six. By age 14 he was taking flying lessons and by 16 he had a pilots license. Armstrong also had a neighbor with a telescope, which fueled his interest in space.
In 1947, Armstrong enrolled in Purdue University in Indiana on a U.S. Navy scholarship. However, after just two years there he was called away to active duty. The youngest pilot in his squadron, Armstrong went on to fly 78 combat missions during the Korean War. He then returned to Purdue and completed his degree in aeronautical engineering.
After graduation, Armstrong worked with the Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) in Cleveland, Ohio. He then went to the NACA High Speed Flight Station in California where he became a test pilot, flying early models of the F-100, B-47, and X-15, among others.
In 1962, Armstrong was one of two civilians selected by NASA to join the astronaut program. Then in March 1966, he flew his first mission, Gemini 8, the first docking of two spacecraft in orbit. In spite of a critical system failure that set his ship out of control, Armstrong was able to correct the issue and safely return the craft to earth.
Armstrong’s calm handling of this situation made him a frontrunner for considerations for the Apollo 11 mission three years later. He served as commander during that mission, which made him a household name. On July 20, Neil Armstrong entered the history books when he became the first man to step on the moon. You can read more about the moon landing here.
After the moon landing, Armstrong worked in NASA’s Office of Advanced Research and Technology. He also taught aerospace engineering for seven years. Armstrong went on to submit proposals for future space operations and investigate the Challenger explosion in 1986.
Armstrong continued to promote space exploration in his final years, speaking out against President Obama’s decision to cancel the Constellation program in 2010. Armstrong died on August 25, 2012.
After his passing, Buzz Aldrin stated, “I know I am joined by millions of others in mourning the passing of a true American hero and the best pilot I ever knew. My friend Neil took the small step but giant leap that changed the world and will forever be remembered as a landmark moment in human history.”
Click here to browse our space stamps, including several more that honor Apollo 11.
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18 responses to "Happy Birthday Neil Armstrong"
18 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Neil Armstrong”
I remember staying up all night with my dad-who was a science teacher-watching the moon landing.
Armstrong has been dead for 3 years now-he should have been on a stamp already, instead of more Disney stamps!
Lyn, my family watched breathlessly on a black-and-white console TV. Those were exciting days.
Thank you Neil Armstrong for your forever remembered work for America. Thank you Barry Soetoro aka Barack Hussein Oblamer for all of your filthy rotten ideas you have duped and dumped on America.
It is totally inappropriate to proclaim your bigoted hatred for any president, when you disagreed with the difficult decisions he had to make. In so many instances history can only judge after years have passed. Please consider that in the future.
Well said Noah
Let’s leave politics out of this blog, Noah! I don’t envy any American who takes the world’s most difficult, challenging job and make decisions 24/7? Why don’t you occupy the oval office and see for yourself how to govern the most diversified democracy in the world! Thank you, Mystic, for covering the story of this great American on stamps.
Could have said the same thing in different language about the deceptions.
I was in 9th grade in high school in India. Every news paper wrote about him. Every one in India talked about him and his first foot step on moon. The prestige of American reached way up to moon level. People talk about American’s can do any thing. To us going to America was equal to going to moon.
Neil was a true American patriot, and hero!
Very interesting article concerning Neil Armstrong. I was very much involved in the space operation since I was One of he Frogmen who went out to open the hatches of the capsules when the landed in the ocean upon the return to earth. We wold fly out in a chopper and jump out close to the capsule, open it and strap on the harness so that the astronaut cold be hoisted up to the chopper and be returned to the aircraft carrier. It was quite an experience.
I recall staying up with my wife and children to see that historical event, knowing full well how dangerous getting to the moon and back was. Cheers resounded throughout our house when Neil set foot on the moon and spoke his now famous words. Like all true heroes, he recognized how utterly dependent he was on others.
When I think of what our astronauts have accomplished, I am amazed. They are true heroes. They make us all proud to be Americans. I was one of those parents who kept their children up to watch. Thank you Obama for killing the space program, but there is a new day. Now we’re talking about Mars.
Great stamps! Great Person, Great era! I remember it like it was yesterday!
S. Mamidi welcome to America my friend
All of us make mistakes. Some, who are in the public light, seem to reap more
criticism for their mistakes than the ones I have made. Anyone out there who has
not made a mistake?? An honest person will acknowledge mistakes and take
measure to correct them.
Yes, great memories. I remember it well. I was 12 years old, had my best friend over to spend the night, my cat had kittens and I had a asthma attack. Too much excitement for an excitable boy.
An incredible time in history. Watched every space flight I could. The Apollo 11 flight was such a mix of excitement of really putting man on the moon and the anxiety of knowing that any one of a thousand things going wrong could make it a disaster. But all went right enough for a great success. Every minute watching seemed a hour at the time. Then looking back it was as if it had flashed by in only mere minutes.