The year is 1969. Bell-bottom pants are everywhere. Richard Nixon is president of the United States. And the world is about to change. On July 20, 1969, a human will land on the Moon for the first time.
Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins have trained hard. Armstrong was chosen to lead the Apollo 11 mission. The time is here. The crew blasts off on a Saturn V rocket. The spacecraft shoots up from Florida.
The explorers speed through space for more than three days. Then, they enter the Moon’s orbit. Armstrong and Aldrin get ready to make history. They put on their spacesuits and get into the lunar module. That spacecraft is called the Eagle. It is their ride down to the Moon!
The lunar module touches the surface. “The Eagle has landed,” Armstrong says. About 650 million people watch on TV. Armstrong climbs down the ladder. He moves his left foot up, up, up, and down. Armstrong is now the first human on another world. He sends a message back to Earth.
“That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
Aldrin joined Armstrong on the Moon. (Aldrin is on the cover. You can see Armstrong in the visor!) The two astronauts spent about 2 hours and 30 minutes walking on the Moon. They collected rocks and dust. The men also planted an American flag.
After 21 hours on the Moon, Armstrong and Aldrin flew back up to meet Collins. They boarded the craft that would get them home safely. Before their return, Aldrin shared his own message. “This has been far more than three men on a voyage to the Moon,” he said. He called the trip a sign of humans pushing “to explore the unknown.”
Armstrong spoke too. He thanked the thousands of people who helped the crew. Then, he signed off: “Good night from Apollo 11.”
Updated July 19, 2019, 5:01 P.M. (ET)
By Ashley Morgan
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