Monday, July 20, 2009

The Third Man of Apollo 11

40 years ago, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon. It's the kind of event that transcends history, one that will be remembered as long as human beings are around. But what of the Apollo 11 command module pilot, Michael Collins?

Collins himself says he felt like an integral part of the mission, but it's hard to believe there wasn't some small part of him that regretted not being able to go with his crewmates. Of course, being a military test pilot (like all early astronauts) means that such feelings wouldn't be expressed:

Then again, only a handful of people have ever even orbited the Moon, so I suppose the sense of loss can't be too bad. Still, it was enough to inspire Jethro Tull to write a song about it:


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