When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin of Apollo 11 stepped on to the surface of the moon in July 1969, it marked the pinnacle of eight years of manned spaceflight. Eight short years saw not only incredible technological advancement, but also the unbelievable bravery of an elite team of astronauts who rode the most powerful rockets ever devised. The space race had been in response to JFK’s promise to the nation and the need to beat the Russians at all costs at a time of intense political rivalry. But victory came at a terrible price with the disastrous Apollo 1 launch-pad fire that killed three astronauts and the dramatic, ill-fated Apollo 13 mission. Twelve men walked on the Moon while mankind discovered a new perspective on planet Earth.
About the Author
John Christopher is the editor of Aerostat and Airship magazines and the author of Balloons at War and Brunel’s Kingdom.