First man to walk on the moon dies at age 82
Astronaut Tom Jones discusses Neil Armstrong
- Duration 9:19
- Date Aug 25, 2012
Astronaut Tom Jones discusses Neil Armstrong
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African bringing in right now former NASA astronaut Tom Jones.
Jones -- -- first I'd like to for you to reflect.
On your memories of mr.
Armstrong and your thoughts right now.
-- I'll have my memories go way back there's a fourteen year old kid watching the first moon landing.
And learning the name of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin and Mike Collins and -- was a man who helped United States achieve the goal of putting a man on the moon before 1970 and winning the space race against the Soviet Union.
He played a key role in American history and I think as we go into that -- first entry you'll be a landmark personality of the twentieth century.
And later -- -- -- astronaut.
Admiring his work.
I finally got to -- when I was up on on the space shuttle so that was a dream come true for me to.
Actually get to talk with -- -- learn a little bit about his career his thoughts about our future space which I think -- not a vital part of the future of this country.
Do you remember what you said to mr.
Armstrong when you met him that day.
I think I just told him that it was great pleasure to meet and then -- how much -- admired his work.
And we worked together for a couple of years on.
Strategic planning for the future of NASA's human space -- program where -- not condone -- you know we haven't been back to the -- And now almost sixty years we I think disappointed -- oldest colleague in.
Not following up on their great discoveries and I think that we had to redouble our efforts thanks to deal.
And his colleagues we've got a great future in space that it could just.
-- -- -- as they did back in the sixties to explore again.
And I wanted to ask you on that very.
Issued there what do you think.
This version of mister Armstrong's thoughts were regarding that can circumstances of NASA today.
Well -- you know he's been very circumspect over the last few decades he didn't go out of public very much rarely gave public speeches but lately he has stepped up -- Speaking about the future of space -- and how important for the country I think.
He would have told you that that is very much concerned that we have not challenged ourselves we have not had ambitious enough -- and -- And we need to get beyond the space station he would say and get back to the moon.
Nearby asteroids and eventually to Mars so he was very much an advocate for -- United States having having an expansive future in space and I think.
Everybody would agree he probably could've done more revenue over the last one here.
Well I tell you again when we see these images it makes you chest it gives you goosebumps quite frankly.
I'm -- assuming that you're seeing these images as well you don't necessarily see the images you don't need to you've lived and yourself.
Having -- on -- in several space shuttles.
What do you think -- bid -- the turn of events today and mr.
Having passed do you think that will re new our energy.
Meaning us as Americans nothing political just doesn't -- -- and perhaps pushing the political.
Folks to get involved and to actually be engaged to seamlessly let's rethink this -- the space program is very much.
A part of our history and very important and shouldn't be an important part of our future.
Well Armstrong's career is evident that that the country can do tremendous things and that puts its mind -- it.
I don't think we've -- that's talent and I don't think Armstrong but we -- that innate ability.
So I believe that examining his career and the achievement that he and his colleagues.
Will remind people again that we have -- capacity to -- reached the limits.
And go beyond -- and that this country has a role to play in pioneering that space crunch here and I think that also.
He showed that.
The technology that would apply to reach the moon on his flight.
Can then be applied to boost our economic and ecological fortunes in the 21 century -- that it almost fifty years ago.
Where -- you mr.
Jones when you first heard this this news today.
I'm I'm not -- what Carolina and just having a family weekend that this was truly -- record it.
He had recent surgery on but is recovering well so it's quite shocked.
Yet he underwent a heart bypass surgery earlier this month to receive some not blocked coronary arteries.
Asking what was the last time you spoke to him do you remember.
Oh it's probably within the last year that we had many chances to work together on the NASA advisory council.
I thought it was when he came to the but -- -- air and space museum.
He talked about the -- is aeronautics career and that is history and space flight belt.
You know it's great -- -- is his own in his own voices retrospect is about that kept flying into.
Early -- the outshot four and you know that's that's what inspired -- to go into the space program and the careers of the Apollo astronauts inspired an entire generation.
They're going to aerospace and the high technology and I think the country -- benefiting from their example and inspiration that provided today.
Personally -- -- from that inspiration.
Having said that mr.
Armstrong was definitely -- when you looked up to so I ask you when you hear your hero is -- your part of the NASA advisory council when you got a chance to hear.
Him review his legacy and his career what do you what struck you most in terms of -- usually.
When you talk about yourself you talk about your most memorable accomplishments what's what struck you most when you heard mr.
Armstrong speak about his own career.
Well an example -- being so modest and unassuming about his role -- very much.
Election as the commander of Apollo eleven as just a lucky break.
In that the timing worked out well and any of the other astronauts he -- it I think he felt could have done.
That job that I think is not the boxes -- better.
They knew -- -- he was under fire from his Gemini mission that he acted.
From orbit on an emergency.
Reentry and he handled that very coolly I think they've figured he was the right person.
Do that with this responsibility for the first US.
Landing attempt on the moon and -- that he succeeded.
I even on that landing attempt when the computer through Emma a couple of curve ball than it was -- -- -- -- -- crater on the moon's surface.
-- but that's one jobless -- while.
And would never rattled and I believe that's what is the carriers.
We're counting on -- it's what we can be commander.
And you again being a former Nassau astronaut yourself does this reignite the fire in your belly.
I'd never locked it I don't think -- -- -- and we are just just.
Hoping that United States congress to prejudiced and that ambitious goal in space I think the most important element is to.
The find the resources that are required to achieve those goals and we can talk about going to Mars someday but unless we get started now.
And struck a concrete steps back toward the -- Beyond the space station back for the moon there's -- nearby asteroids those are essential.
Stepping stone that -- has been advocating that we should follow and we need to pull together and not just does treat space exploration has.
A jobs program you know it's it's.
It's a primer for the next generation of scientists and engineers.
It's primed the -- -- -- technology to keep it competitive or around the globe and accept a position Armstrong certainly has -- And as you said mr.
Jones you of course he'd never lost the fire but.
Your hero your mentor and someone who is so important our American history our space history.
What do you do now to renew your efforts to -- to move forward in the future and could be.
That leading country that we we -- and have been hurt for so many decades.
In this space race.
Well we remember that Armstrong and his colleagues land on the moon about.
Only seven or eight years after.
About eight years after John F.
Kennedy that the goal of landing -- And it was an all out Cold War effort crash program.
We haven't treated the space program in that regard today we don't have an urgent need to rate anyone that's not what we're involved.
However we -- -- the set goals for -- ourselves that are challenging.
And then get after those goals in the immediate future not to set -- -- 25 or thirty years in the future we'll never get there.
If we're talking about two -- -- is the way.
So with -- strong passing.
Reminds us of what the country won't -- -- and space.
And I think we need to challenge ourselves to show that we still have those skills and the will to put.
Program of exploration together fighting together and I think of economic development states we need to use the resources that are founded based.
Super -- our economy and bring benefits back to us on the ground another ball you know -- not only going back to the moon where Armstrong went you know in 1969.
-- setting goals beyond that to the nearby asteroid two.
-- points that will lead us directly to.
Mars exploration Monday ending up before we get -- -- sort of episode factory in state.
-- take advantage of the resources are out there to make money in states.
And Cuba in -- paper those future voyages from our.
All of that economic development all that technology it -- an -- Mr.
-- and require -- -- from about but I do appreciate your time your insight thank you very much again.
Neil Armstrong has died at the age of 82.