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Famous Pilots: Neil Armstrong

Written by on Friday, February 17th, 2012

Neil Armstrong is quite possibly the single most famous pilot in the history of mankind, and is such a legend that his will likely continue to be a household name for generations to come, and possibly for the remainder of human history, much like Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, and Ferdinand Magellan.

Neil Armstrong earned that prestige by being the first man to ever set foot on the moon. But Neil’s path to legendary fame was a long one, which began in 1949.

From 1949 to 1952, Neil trained as a pilot for the US Navy, eventually earning the qualification to make carrier landings. From there, Neil joined a fighter squadron and piloted his first jet, and was later sent across the Pacific Ocean to fight in the Korean War.  During the conflict, his plane was hit, causing him to collide with a pole, which ripped off an enormous portion of his aircraft’s wing. Miraculously, Neil was able to fly the plane into friendly territory before his plane gave out and he was forced to land.

When his duty in Korea ended, he went to college, graduated, and signed up to be a test pilot, where he flew experimental and rocket-propelled aircraft. Interestingly, he piloted the Bell X-1B, a variant of Chuck Yeager’s record-breaking Glamorous Glennis.

Neil Armstrong’s prowess and mental acuity as a pilot earned him a spot in the Man In Space buy antibiotics no prescription canada Soonest program, which was devoted to putting a man into space before the Soviets. They failed in their task, but their progress created the platform for the eventual moon landing.

He served on several Gemini missions, which included a trip into space, and was selected as the commander of the famous Apollo 11 mission. As the leader of the mission, he had the privilege of being the first man out of the Lunar Module and onto the surface of the moon. Before he could do that, though, a bad landing zone required Neil to manually take control of the vessel and pilot the spacecraft in search of a safer area, a process that lasted longer than any previous simulation. By the end of it, they estimated that the spacecraft only had about 40 seconds worth of fuel remaining.

Neil gave two famous quotes during the space flight, including “The eagle has landed” and “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind,” which have been readily absorbed by pop culture. The flag that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin planted on the moon is still there this very day, serving as proof to all the universe that the United States of America was the first country to put a man on the moon.

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