Saturday, July 18, 2009

July 20, 1969- 'Lewis & Clark' of the 20th Century

July 20th is only about a day away now. That will be the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission that first landed man on the moon. I was only a toddler when President Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act but I was born at a perfect time in history to grow up during the age of space exploration. I think that being a first hand witness during such an inspiring era had a lot to do with my own need to explore and travel during the years that followed. But most of all I think that it was a catalyst for helping me to put meaningful priorities to the forefront in my own life.

I clearly remember watching all of the rocket launches from Cape Canaveral on our black & white TV from Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo. I saved and still have all of the front page newspaper headlines of the space program milestones and especially those from all the moon landings. The space program fascinated me as a kid and it still does just as strongly today as it did in the 1960's. There's just something about space exploration that helps define the deepest mysteries of what it means to be human. Despite the debates I believe that there is no stopping of civilization when it comes to exploring the stars for as long as man inhabits this planet. To better understand the mysteries of life and to see what lies around the "next bend in the river" is at the core of what it means to be human. It's a huge part of what defines us.

Godspeed to Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins and the thousands of other people that it took to first put man on the moon and to all those who will put us on Mars during the next couple of decades.

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