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Detail of Biography - Neil Armstrong
Name :
Neil Armstrong
Date :
Views :
637
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Birth Date :
05/08/2030
Birth Place :
Wapakoneta, Ohio, to Stephen
Death Date :
Not Available
Biography - Neil Armstrong
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Neil Armstrong was born on his grandparent’s farm in Wapakoneta, Ohio on August 5, 1930, to Stephen and Viola Armstrong. An exceptionally bright child with blue eyes and blond hair, he learned to read before he started school. In the first grade, he read an amazing 90 books. Tests showed that his reading ability was equivalent to a fifth grade student, which made him skip the second grade. Neil was not interested in any sport or athletic activity; his only love being aviation. His interest in flying developed at an early age of two, when his father took him to the National Air Races in Cleveland, Ohio. At the age of six, his interest intensified when his father had a big surprise for his son – his first airplane ride in a Ford Tri – Motor, a ‘Tin Goose’, in Warren, Ohio.[br /]
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As a young boy, Neil Armstrong had a recurring dream in which he held his breath and floated high above the people, houses, and cars. He spent his free time reading stacks of flying magazines, building model airplanes, and staring through the homemade telescope mounted on the roof of his neighbor's garage. As a teenager, Neil became obsessed with the idea of flight, working odd jobs to pay for flying lessons at a nearby airport. He earned his student pilot's license on his sixteenth birthday. From that time onwards he claimed an intense fascination for aviation. Flying and Neil Armstrong, it was love at first sight. In his dreams, in a bedroom filled with airplane models, the thought of flying became an all-consuming passion. When he was a little older, Neil would hang around the local airport doing odd jobs for the pilots and soaking in the stories of the veteran flyers, many of who had barnstormed the country during the ‘Roaring 20s’.
As a child, he had experimented with model airplanes and a home-built wind tunnel. While most of his teen-age friends were looking forward to driving a car, Neil was intent on learning how to fly. By the time he was 14, he started taking flying lessons at Wapakoneta Airport, now named Neil Armstrong Airport. He paid for the lessons by working as a stock boy in a pharmacy. He made it to his pilot license before he got his driver’s license. He graduated from Blume High School in 1947, and it was time to go to college, and his choice was obvious. Neil enrolled at Indiana’s Purdue University, where he studied aeronautical engineering, which would allow him someday to design the airplanes he would fly.[br /]
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Neil underwent flight training in Pensacola, Florida. However, when the Korean War broke out in 1950, Neil, 20, set aside his books and joined the United States Navy, where he became a jet pilot – the youngest in his squadron. Assigned to the aircraft carrier Essex, Neil flew 78 combat missions during his tour of duty. It was during one of those missions that he was nearly killed. One of the wings of his jet was badly damaged during a bombing run. However, he managed through a combination of skill and coolness, to keep the plane airborne long enough to get out of enemy territory before parachuting to safety.[br /]
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Following the war, he decided to return to civilian life. He went back to Purdue and graduated with a degree in aeronautical engineering. He taught undergraduate math and finished studying for his Bachelor of Science degree. Now, married with two sons and a daughter (who died very young), Armstrong moved his family to California, where he went to work for the National Advisory Committee on Aeronautics and was stationed at Edwards Air Force Base to work on developing high-speed rocket planes. He later received a Master of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Southern California. Armstrong was decidedly one of the most talented young pilots among his peers. He was one of the three pilots chosen during his time to fly the X-15, a prototype spacecraft, which he flew successfully on seven flights. His experience on the X-15 led to a piloting opportunity aboard a revolutionary aircraft, the Dynasoar, a plane designed to leave the atmosphere and orbit the earth like a spaceship but with the function to re-enter the atmosphere and land like a conventional airplane. In 1962, while working on the Dynasoar, Armstrong applied to a recently established astronaut program of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). NASA accepted him as one of only the second group of astronauts in its history, and Armstrong immediately began specialized training. His first assignment was as backup command pilot for the Gemini 5 mission. He made his first space flight as the commander pilot on the Gemini – Titan 8 mission, which was launched on March 16, 1966. Gemini 8 was the first craft to dock while in orbit with another vehicle, the Agena. During this mission, due to a malfunction with the manual control, Armstrong was forced to bring the spacecraft down in the Pacific. His composure under pressure was noteworthy in this potentially disastrous situation, assuring NASA officials that Armstrong was a reliable choice to lead future projects. Thus, his first mission was a mixture of triumph and near disaster.[br /]
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Armstrong was chosen to command the world’s first lunar landing, the Apollo 11 space mission, and America’s first attempt to land a manned vehicle on the moon. On July 20, 1969, Commander Armstrong and fellow astronaut Edwin Aldrin successfully touched down on the lunar surface. As soon as they landed Armstrong prepared the exploration module for immediate take-off in case of any problems that might arise. Then he along with Aldrin began to get ready for the momentous part of the mission – stepping on to the surface of the moon. He remained on the lunar surface for 21 hours collecting samples and carrying out experiments. Apollo 11 returned to earth, entering the atmosphere at a speed of 11 km per second before splashing down into the Pacific Ocean. After having stamped his feet on the moon, Armstrong received accolades from all over the world and was hailed as a hero. But Apollo 11 was the last space flight for Armstrong. Feeling that being the first man on the moon was enough fame and adventure for one lifetime, Armstrong took an administrative position with NASA. In 1971, Armstrong left the spotlight of the space agency to teach aerospace engineering at the University of Cincinnati, where he taught until 1979. In 1980, he became chairman of Cardwell International, a supplier of oil-drilling equipment. From 1983-1993, he was chairman of Computing Technologies for Aviation. In 1997, he became director of Ohio National Financial Services Inc., based in Cincinnati. Armstrong currently lives in Ohio with his wife Janet Sharon. In addition to his accomplishments in astronautics, Armstrong had a successful career in education and business. In or out of the spotlight, Neil Armstrong will remain – [b]"The first man to go where no man had ever gone before."[/b][br /]
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[b]NATURE[/b][br /]
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[b]•[/b] The man behind the legend –[br /]
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A combination of ‘skill and cool’, Armstrong is an intensely private person with a wry sense of humor. A quiet, introspective man who refrains from making public appearances. His ‘gut feeling’ when he lifted off with Aldrin and Michael Collins was that they had a 90 per cent chance of returning safely to earth and that he and Aldrin had a 50 per cent chance of landing successfully on the moon. ‘Grace under pressure’ is what is noteworthy about Armstrong. He is a man, who grew up in several communities including Warren, Jefferson, Ravenna, St. Marys and Upper Sandusky.[br /]
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He delivers highly entertaining and motivational speeches. His talks are based on his knowledge and insights gained by astronaut training and pioneering missions. With his fascinating accounts of space flight, he drives people to excel. He did many incredible and daring things for which he will always be remembered.[br /]
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[b]BEHIND THE DECISION[/b][br /]
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In May 1961, President Kennedy announced that the nation would have a man on the moon before the end of the decade. In July 1961, NASA asked 12 different companies to come up with the proposals for the construction of the first manned spacecraft. By November, North American Aviation was chosen to be the main contractor for NASA. By January 5, 1962 the drawings of the Apollo spacecraft were finally seen by the public. There were many Apollo missions but the most memorable was Apollo 11. President Kennedy was true to his words and on July 20, 1969, Neil Alden Armstrong, commander of Apollo 11 took the first step on the moon.[br /]
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[b]BEFORE THE EVENT[/b][br /]
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The privilege of being the first man to set his foot on the moon was somewhat uncertain for Armstrong.[br /]
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There was uncertainty and a fair bit of tension, as to whether it would be Aldrin, the pilot or Armstrong, the commander to be the first out of the capsule. Precedents existed which suggested that, in the event of an extravehicular activity, it was the pilot, who should leave the module before the commander, to avoid placing the commander in jeopardy. On the other hand, protocol was quite clear that while a ship was in port, the commander should be the first to leave. Both Aldrin and Armstrong dreamt of the honor of setting their foot first on the lunar soil. Both were obliged to maintain a professional detachment. In the end NASA decided to send Armstrong, probably because he was a civilian. The Grumman Corporation had created a craft where the commander’s seat was closer to the hatch.[br /]
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[b]LOVE OF BEING LOW-PROFILE[/b][br /]
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His personal life has remained largely invisible to outsiders. In 1994 he and Jan quietly ended their 38-year marriage. They had the judge seal the record temporarily, attracting minimum press attention. While the divorce records did not reveal his net worth, Jan's share of the real estate and personal property totaled about $2.24 million, plus additional real estate of unspecified value and spousal support payments of up to $6,000 a month.[br /]
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A short time later, Armstrong married Carol Knight, 15 years his junior, and moved into her home in Indian Hills, an affluent suburb of Cincinnati. Friends describe her as chatty, very friendly. ''She's a super gal,'' says Conrad, who bumped into the Armstrongs a few weeks ago at a Beverly Hills party. ''We had a nice conversation'' catching up on each other's activities, he says. ''I guess Neil is doing a lot of traveling.''[br /]
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Neil Armstrong hates publicity and his exact sentiments about his feelings towards his achievements were summed up by his colleagues when he graduated from Blume High school; In the school yearbook, they wrote for him,[br /]
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[b]"He thinks, he acts, t'is done."[/b][br /]
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Many decades ago, man made his first tentative probes into near space. Then, his eyes fixed on the moon, that cold and lifeless globe with its borrowed light. He was poised to soar beyond the earth into a vast and trackless void.[br /]
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Neil Armstrong, the Columbus of Space came into this world on August 5, 1930, and left it on June 16, 1969, for what is perhaps the greatest adventure in human history. He left his footprints on the powdery surface of the moon, the first man to do so. A man, who did many incredible things, made world headlines with the Apollo 11 voyage.[br /]
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His mission gave rise to new ideas and his first step became the corner-stone for future exploration.[br /]
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This document is an attempt to provide you an insight into the life of this astronaut, the explorations and expeditions that created history. The exploration of the moon in its real perspective as well as the efforts of man to make it real are all covered here.[br /]
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[b]August 5, 1930[/b]
Born on his grandparent’s farm near Wapakoneta, Ohio, to Stephen and Viola Armstrong.[br /]
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[b]1947[/b]
Graduated from Blume High School in Wapakoneta.[br /]
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[b]1947[/b]
Entered Purdue University with a Navy Scholarship.[br /]
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[b]1949-52[/b]
Flew as a Naval Aviator.[br /]
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[b]1955[/b]
Received a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Purdue University.[br /]

Joined NASA’s Lewis Research Center.[br /]
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[b]January 1956[/b]
Married Janet Shearon of Evanston, Illinois.[br /]
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[b]June 30, 1957[/b]
Son Eric born.[br /]
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[b]November 30, 1960[/b]
Made his first flight on X-15.[br /]
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[b]September 17, 1962[/b]
NASA chose him to be an astronaut and his first assignment was as backup command pilot for the Gemini V mission.[br /]
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[b]April 8, 1963[/b]
Son Mark was born.[br /]
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[b]1966[/b]
Became command pilot of the Gemini VIII and successfully completed the first rendezvous and docking in space.[br /]
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[b]1968[/b]
Chosen to become a member of Apollo 11 mission.[br /]
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[b]July 16, 1969[/b]
Began his trip to moon.[br /]
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[b]July 20, 1969[/b]
Became the first man to walk on the moon. Spent about two and one-half hours walking on the moon, collecting samples, doing experiments and taking photographs.[br /]
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[b]July 24, 1969[/b]
Splashed down on the Pacific Ocean from where he was picked up by the aircraft carrier, U.S.S. Hornet.[br /]
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[b]1970[/b]
Was appointed Deputy Associate Administrator for Aeronautics at NASA head quarters.[br /]
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[b]1971[/b]
Left the spotlight of the space agency, resigned from NASA to become a professor of Aerospace Engineering at the University of Cincinnati.[br /]
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[b]1972[/b]
Neil Armstrong Air and Space Museum opened.[br /]
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[b]1979[/b]
Left Cincinnati to join Cardwell International Corp., Lebanon Ohio, as Chairman of the Board.[br /]
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[b]1982[/b]
Left Cardwell to become Chairman of the Board of Computing Technologies for Aviation (CTA) Inc., based in Charlottesville, Virginia.[br /]
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[b]1984[/b]
Accepted an appointment to the National Commission on Space.[br /]
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[b]January 28, 1986[/b]
Armstrong was named Vice Chairman of the Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger accident.[br /]
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[b]1985[/b]
President Ronald Reagan named Armstrong to the National Commission on Space and the next year was appointed Vice Chairman of the blue-ribbon panel that investigated the explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger.[br /]
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[b]February 1990[/b]
Father died.[br /]
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[b]May 21, 1990[/b]
Mother died.[br /]
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[b]1981 – 1999[/b]
Served on the Board of Directors for Eaton Corp. Also served as Chairman of the Board of AIL systems, Inc. of Deer Park, New York, until 1999.[br /]
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[b]March 19, 1993[/b]
Inducted into the Astronaut Hall of Fame.[br /]
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[b]2000[/b]
Was elected Chairman of the Board of EDO Corp., a manufacturer of electronic and mechanical systems for the aerospace, defense and industrial markets based in New York City.[br /]
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A moment after landing the vehicle on the moon. Armstrong radioed the words which a vast and anxious earth community had been waiting to hear.[br /]

[b]"Tranquility base here. The eagle has landed."[/b][br /]
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His first words after stepping on the moon were -[br /]

[b]"That’s one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind."[/b][br /]
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With these historic words man’s dream of the ages was fulfilled and Armstrong began a whole new chapter in human history.[br /]

[b]"It suddenly struck me that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet earth I didn’t feel like a giant. I felt very, very small."[/b][br /]
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[h2]HIS FAMOUS STATEMENTS[/h2][br /]
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[b]"After landing, actually having been somewhat surprised. The fact that we were able to make a successful touchdown, I realized I was going to have to say something,"[/b] said Armstrong.[br /]
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[b]"But it wasn’t anything very complicated. When you just think about stepping off, why it seemed to follow."[/b][br /]
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[b]"I thought I said it. I can’t hear it when I listen on the radio reception here on earth, so I’ll be happy if you just put it in parenthesis."[/b][br /]
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[h2]OTHERS ON NEIL[/h2][br /]
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Apollo 12’s boisterous commander Pete Conrad the third man on the moon in response to the common question of whether someone else would have made a better first man on the moon – [br /]

[b]"Come on. I mean, Neil is entitled to do his things."[/b][br /]
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Collins wrote in his 1974 book Carrying the Fire - [br /]

[b]"I can’t off hand think of a better choice to be first man on the moon."[/b][br /]
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Gordon acknowledges Armstrong[br /]

[b]"-- has to command a lot of respect for what he did and his capacities."[br /]

"I make no judgment – Neil did what he wanted to do."[/b][br /]
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Apollo 12’s Dick Gordon said, [b]"I think there is a reason to tell the story. Neil has the capability of doing that very well. He chooses not to."[/b][br /]

[b]"You can imagine what would happen if he started something like that. I mean, the poor guy would never have any peace of mind."[/b][br /]
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[b]Neil responses to Journalists[/b][br /]
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Would you choose privacy over being the first man on the moon?[br /]
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[b]Neil : "Never."[/b][br /]
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Do you think about moon-landing on a daily basis?[br /]
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[b]Neil : "Probably only when you guys remind me."[/b][br /]
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Should America return to the moon?[br /]
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[b]Neil : "Yeah, I left a few things up there."[/b][br /]
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The highest achievement for Neil was a demonstration that humanity is not forever chained to this planet and our visions go farther than that.[br /]
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By age 16, he had his student pilot’s license, before he even passed his automobile driver’s test.[br /]
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After two years of study at Purdue, he was called to active duty with the Navy and won his pilot’s wings a Pensacola Naval Air Station, Florida.[br /]
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At 20, he was the youngest pilot in his squadron in Korea, where he flew 78 combat missions.[br /]
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Prior to his graduation he actively served for several years in the U. S. Navy.[br /]
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Distinguished himself by winning three air medals for his participation in combat missions during the Korean War.[br /]
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Upon graduation from High School in 1947, Armstrong received a scholarship from the U. S. Navy.[br /]
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He became one of the first two civilian astronauts, when he was selected with Group 2 on September 17, 1962.[br /]
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Became the first human to leave his footprints in the lunar dust.[br /]
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Accumulated a total of 8 days and 14 hours in space, including 2 hours and 48 minutes walking on the moon.[br /]
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Was commander of Gemini 8 mission that performed the first successful docking of two vehicles in space.[br /]
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In addition to his accomplishments in Astronautics, Armstrong has been successful in education and business.[br /]
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He was one of the three pilots chosen to fly X-15 a prototype spacecraft, which he flew successfully on seven flights.[br /]
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Has numerous honorary doctorates to his credit.[br /]
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Best known as the captain of Space Mission P Apollo 11.[br /]
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He opened a new era in mankind’s exploration of the universe.[br /]
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