President Nixon Greets the Returning Apollo 11 Astronauts

The Apollo 11 astronauts, left to right, Commander Neil A. Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins and Lunar Module Pilot Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin Jr., inside the Mobile Quarantine Facility aboard the USS Hornet, listen to President Richard M. Nixon on July 24, 1969 as he welcomes them back to Earth and congratulates them on the successful mission. The astronauts had splashed down in the Pacific Ocean at 12:50 p.m. EDT about 900 miles southwest of Hawaii.

Apollo 11 launched from Cape Kennedy on July 16, 1969, carrying the astronauts into an initial Earth-orbit of 114 by 116 miles. An estimated 530 million people watched Armstrong’s televised image and heard his voice describe the event as he took “…one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind” on July 20, 1969.

Image Credit: NASA

President Nixon Greets Apollo 11 Crew - NASA

Moon Day – Celebrating Apollo 11

Apollo 11 - Celebrating Mission Success

Triumph

In the Mission Operations Control Room of the Mission Control Center, Building 30, Manned Spacecraft Center, flight controllers applaud the splashdown and success of the Apollo 11 lunar mission.

Four days earlier on July 20, 1969, mission commander Neil Armstrong and lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon. Armstrong, Aldrin and command module pilot Michael Collins splashed down in the Pacific Ocean on July 24, successfully completing the mission.

Image Credit: NASA