August 27, 2012

Neil Armstrong, R.I.P.

Neil Armstrong, first man to walk on the moon, died over the weekend. My obituary of Armstrong appears over at the mother ship, but since we're all about TV over here, let's look at some video.

Here's the famous appearance by Armstrong's parents on I've Got a Secret, when host Garry Moore asks them how they'd feel if their son was someday to be the first man on the moon.

 
Here is NBC's coverage of the Apollo 11 launch.  It was a dominant event on television - I was on summer vacation, so I didn't have to worry about missing the excitement because I was stuck in school.  I made sure I set the alarm to get up early that morning and watch the pre-launch coverage.  So many times nowadays we see specialized coverage by "science reporters," so it's interesting to watch Huntley and Brinkley reporting from the Cape.


These are highlights of the restored footage of Armstrong's first steps on the moon.  Remarkable - as I mentioned at Our Word, it was just about impossible to believe that they were going to show live television from the moon.  Surely they were just going to have the sound against some animation, weren't they?
 
Remember how emotional Walter Cronkite got when Armstrong first stepped on the moon? Cronkite and Wally Schirra, such genuine awe. Is this really happening? "It still seems like a dream." 
 
Not TV footage, but I remember sitting at home watching the astronauts, after they came out of their quarantine, flying from city to city to take part in parades.  New York, of course, but here are home movies of their parade in Chicago.  I think there was one in Philadelphia as well, and there must have been one in California.  They were all on TV, and I remember some of them were held on the same day.
  
 
Happy memories.  Godspeed, Neil Armstrong.

1 comment:

  1. Garry Moore was clairvoyant!

    If he watched the first moon landing with family or friends, he probably told them "See, I told you when he joined the astronaut program that Neil Armstrong would be the first man on the moon!".

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