Neil Armstrong was an astronaut.
An astronaut is defined as a person who is trained to travel in a spacecraft.
Neil Armstrong was born on August 5, 1930 near Wapakonet Ohio.
He always had an interest in flying. He flew his first plane at age 6, with help of course.
At the age of 15 he received his pilots license, before he had his driver’s license!
Neil Armstrong was an Eagle Scout in the Boys Scouts of America.
He received a US Navy scholarship to college and attended Purdue University in Indiana.
While in college Neil Armstrong was called into active military duty and became a Navy Fighter Pilot in the Korean War at the age of 20.
He flew in 78 missions in the Korean War and received an Air Medal and two Gold Stars.
In 1952 he left the military and went back to college.
In 1955 he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering. He later earned his master’s degree from the University of Southern California in Aerospace Engineering.
After college he was a test pilot for the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) later renamed the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
Neil Armstrong’s first journey into space was aboard Gemini 8.
He became commander of Apollo 11 on December 23, 1968.
On July 16, 1969 Apollo 11 launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
There were two other astronauts aboard Apollo 11, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.
On July 21, 1969 Neil Armstrong took the first step on the moon.
When he took his first steps it was recorded that he said “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Later Neil Armstrong stated that he actually said “That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.”
It was recorded that 600 million people watched Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon.
Richard Nixon was the president at the time.
Buzz Aldrin also walked on the moon. He and Neil Armstrong spend two hours on the moon collecting rocks and doing research.
Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s footsteps are still imprinted on the moon today.
Neil Armstrong was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1969.
He was also awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor in 1978.
After retiring from being an astronaut, Neil Armstrong became a professor of aerospace engineering at University of Cincinnati.
He was married to Janet Shearon and had two children, Eric and Karen.
Neil Armstrong died on August 25, 2012 at the age of 82. He died from complications from heart surgery.