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NEIL ARMSTRONG PASSES AWAY, BUT ASTRONAUT'S ENDURING LEGACY LIVES ON

Posted by RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX on Thu, Aug 30, 2012 @ 02:00 PM

On Saturday, August 25, 2012, NASA and the people of the United States suffered a tremendous loss, when Neil Armstrong, the first human who walked on the moon, died. Armstrong, who, as the commander of the Apollo 11 spacecraft, stepped foot on the moon, on July 20, 1969, and uttered those famous words, “This is one small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind.”

NEIL ARMSTRONG|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|NEIL ARMSTRONG - AMERICAN SPACE PIONEER THAT WAS TO BE CHOSEN TO COMMAND THE FIRST LUNAR LANDING

Armstrong was one of three astronauts who were made famous on that day in July 1969. His fellow astronauts included Michael Collins and Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin.

Many of us still remember that day when the whole world was watching and listening to the broadcast that would launch the careers of the famous trio of American astronauts.

APOLLO 11|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|APOLLO 11 COMMAND MODULE - BREATHTAKING ADVENTURE BY CREW IN 1969

At the time, the fascination with space travel, in particular the manned mission to the moon was deeply ingrained in the American psyche. We were of one mind that it was indeed our obligation to explore space, a focus that ensured the United States’ dominance as a world leader in space exploration. NASA, and in particular, Neil Armstrong, catapulted the space program into the juggernaut that was back in the late 60’s. For many years after that famous moon mission, NASA provided the inspiration for other individuals who joined the astronaut program.

NEIL ARMSTRONG|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|THREE YEARS PRIOR TO ACTUAL MOON LAUNCH THE, TO BE,  LEGENDARY NEIL ARMSTRONG IS ASSISTED BY THE HIGHLY SKILLED NASA STAFF

At an early age, Armstrong had developed a fascination with flight, and when he was 16, earned his student pilot's license. Later, in 1949, when he was attending studying aeronautical engineering at Purdue University, he was called to duty to serve in the Korean War. During this military conflict, Armstrong flew over 75 combat missions in his capacity as a U.S. Navy pilot. He left the service in 1952, and returned to college. A few years later, he joined the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), which later became the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|NEIL ARMSTRONG|THE 38 YEAR OLD FORMER COMBAT PILOT AND TEST PILOT GOES ON TO A LEGENDARY NASA SPACE ENDEAVOR,  WHICH RESULTS IN BECOMING THE FIRST HUMAN TO WALK ON THE SURFACE OF THE MOON

At NASA, Armstrong proved time and time again his skills and exemplary knowledge of aeronautical engineering, and applied this expertise in all facets of his career. His excellence in performance would not go unnoticed.

Neil Armstrong joined the astronaut program in 1962, and four years later, served as command pilot for his first mission, Gemini VIII. He and his fellow astronaut David Scott were launched into the earth's orbit on March 16, 1966.

NEIL ARMSTRONG|APOLLO 11 LIFT OFF|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|LIFT-OFF 1969 - THE MAGNIFICENT AND GROUND-BREAKING APOLLO 11

Armstrong’s mettle would be tested in 1969. Alongside Michael Collins and Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin, he was part of NASA's first manned mission to the moon. The three men were launched into space on July 16, 1969. Serving as the mission's commander, Armstrong piloted the Lunar Module to the moon's surface on July 20, 1969, with Buzz Aldrin aboard. Collins remained on the Command Module.

NEIL ARMSTRONG|BUZZ COLLINS|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|NEIL ARMSTORNG AND BUZZ COLLINS - THE 1969 APOLLO 11 MOON LANDING WAS AN HISTORICAL EVENT THAT CHANGED SPACE EXPLORATION FOREVER

Watching this historical event unfold before our eyes was riveting, to say the least. The international community was fixated on the mission and witnessed for the very first time, solid evidence that man was capable of developing a first-rate space program.

On July 24, 1969, the Apollo 11 craft came splashing down in the Pacific Ocean. Not long after their return, the three astronauts were given a warm welcome home.

NEIL ARMSTRONG|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|A YOUNG COMMANDER - NEIL ARMSTRONG -  NOT LONG BEFORE HE IS TO RECEIVE ALONG WITH MICHAEL COLLINS AND BUZZ ALDRIN A DESERVED HEROES WELCOME THORUGHOUT THE U.S.A. AND MUCH OF THE FREE WORLD

Feted in a gigantic ticker-tape parade, Armstrong, Collins, and Aldrin were jubilantly greeted by throngs of people who lined the streets of New York City to cheer the triumphant heroes. Armstrong received numerous awards for his efforts, including the Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

GEORGE BUSH APOLLO 11|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|THE APOLLO 11 CREW IS WELCOMED BY PRESIDENT GEORGE BUSH TO THE OVAL OFFICE ON THE 35TH ANNIVERSARY OF THEIR 1969 LUNAR MOON LANDING - LEFT TO RIGHT: MICHAEL COLLINS, PRESIDENT GEORGE BUSH, NEIL ARMSTRONG AND BUZZ ALDRIN

 Serving as deputy associate administrator for aeronautics, Armstrong remained with NASA until 1971. After leaving NASA, he joined the faculty of the University of Cincinnati as a professor of aerospace engineering, where he remained for eight years. In addition, as a result of his desire to remain active in his field, he served as chairman of Computing Technologies for Aviation, Inc., from 1982 to 1992.

NEIL ARMSTRONG|THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION|HAVING NO REAL CONCEPT AT THE TIME, OF HIS NEAR END OF LIFE, THE GREAT PIONEER, NEIL ARMSTRONG, APPEARS ONLY A YEAR BEFORE HIS UNFORTUNATE DEATH AS A RESULT OF SURGICAL BYPASS COMPLICATIONS

 In early August 2012, Armstrong underwent a heart bypass operation. A few weeks later, on August 25, 2012, Neil Armstrong passed away, as a result of complications arising from a cardiovascular surgical procedure at the age of 82.

 Neil Armstrong's legacy and commitment to space exploration will forever be indelible in the minds and hearts of people all over the world. His legacy will endure for all Americans who stood united on that day in July, 1969, when he became the first person to step foot on the moon.

apollo 11 astronauts signed photo

RARE JEWEL OF THIS 1969 HISTORICAL EVENT: THIS AUTOGRAPHED PHOTO OF APOLLO 11 ASTRONAUTS -  THE RALEIGH DEGEER AMYX COLLECTION

We are indeed proud and honored to present an extremely rare signed photograph of the three famous Apollo astronauts. This rare gem is a fitting tribute to the three men who through their extraordinary and historical mission instilled inspiration and fascination of space exploration for generations of Americans.

apollo 11 patch

THE OFFICIAL APOLLO 11 MOON MISSION PATCH

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