Neil Armstrong, Nerdy Engineer

Posted by – August 26, 2012

Neil Armstrong, the first man to step foot on the moon, died August 25 at age 82. Although he will be remembered for his “one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind”, he described himself as a nerdy engineer. He avoided the limelight and never published a memoir, and seemed reluctant to take any credit for the thousands of people in the NASA team that made Apollo 11 possible. Whatever history’s verdict will be, I remain most impressed that, despite his narrow escape from a simulator crash in 1968 (below), he landed essentially the same craft on the moon the next year. As you watch the video, note that, at prossibly the last instant for him to safely do so, he ejects – just 1.5 seconds before impact.