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The Globe and Mail

Your say: How did the 1969 moon landing affect you?

In this July 20, 1969 file photo provided by NASA shows Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin, the first men to land on the moon, plant the U.S. flag on the lunar surface.


In the wake of Neil Armstrong's death, The Globe asked readers how his historic trip to the moon affected them:

"Pure and simple, one of the defining moments of my life. I was thirteen years old, my sister and parents had already bailed out and had gone to bed. With my brother, seven years older, I stayed up to watch it transpire on our black and white portable TV.

"The next morning my father sent me to the local store to buy every newspaper they had; and I did: I still have the front page of the Globe and Mail from the following day report, green type and all, now framed and under glass."

- David Anjo
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

"I was hitchhiking in Germany at the time, and only found out when I was given a free beer 'because I was an American.' Was probably the last time Europeans didn't automatically dislike anyone who was from the U.S. of A."

- David Erbach
Bowling Green, Kentucky

"I was 19.  I was enthralled, and in awe of the landing.  The big question was then whether the lunar landing module would be successful in taking off again from the moon. I was driving my dad's car between Galt and Hespeler, Ontario as the take off was reported over the radio.  I was so focused on the report that I missed a speed zone change and received my first-ever speeding ticket."

- Lorna Cairns
London, Ont.

"I was 14 years old and just packing up at Farragut State Park in Idaho at a National Boy Scout Jamboree... I will always remember them announcing over the P.A. that the EAGLE HAD LANDED and people spontaneously at once blew bugles, whistles, banged pots -- whatever they could make sound with. It made the hair in my arms stand up. To this day whenever I see a story about Neil Armstrong and Apollo 11 I think about that day."

- Jim Hill
Trail, B.C.

"I began my first real job as an immigration officer at Toronto International Airport in February 1969 and found myself working the night shift when the lunar module was to land.

"I pleaded with my shift supervisor that history was going to be made this night, and he was sympathetic though 30 years my senior.

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"A student was sent off home and brought back a small TV and we jiggered it to get the signal. Some passengers were delayed on account of this but I felt I had witnessed something terrific about what could be done if we applied ourselves to things beyond ideology and war."

- David Hall

"I was 20 and had been on a date. I returned home and watched the landing with my parents. What I remember most is, after the landing, none of us said anything. We were, as the Brits, say, gobsmacked."

- John Richardson

"I was nine years old and we lived in Fort Nelson, B.C., mile 300 on the Alaska Highway. We had never even seen a TV and  my dad bought one just for this show. We all sat and watched the landing on our brand new floor model wood cabinet TV set. I remember how frustrated Dad was as he spent extra for colour and it came in black and white. Not one word was spoken throughout the landing."

- Gary Bourget


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