Neil Armstrong: 1930-2012
See images from the career of astronaut and American hero Neil Armstrong.
Apollo 11 commander Neil Armstrong, who passed away on Aug. 25, 2012, will be forever known as the first man to set foot on the moon. This 1969 portrait shows Armstrong in his spacesuit, standing in front of a large photograph of the lunar surface.
Astronaut Neil Armstrong is pictured with his wife, Janet, and his two sons, Eric and Mark, on Aug. 26, 1963.
Neil Armstrong is buckled up at a NASA training center on Sept. 1, 1963.
Neil Armstrong strides alongside a lunar landing research vehicle, also known as a "flying bedstead," at Edwards Air Force Base in California on Aug. 1, 1964. The LLRV was used to train astronauts for landings on the moon. In 1968, Armstrong had to eject from an LLRV when the flight controls failed. It was one of the astronaut's closest calls.
Neil Armstrong sits in a mock space capsule, dressed in a full Navy Mark IV pressure suit (except for the helmet), during training for his Gemini space mission in the mid-1960s.
Commander Neil Armstrong (foreground) and pilot David Scott prepare to get into their Gemini 8 capsule on March 16, 1966. The mission marked the first docking of two spacecraft in orbit, but ended prematurely due to a thruster malfunction. Armstrong got the spacecraft under control and brought the capsule safely back to Earth for a Pacific splashdown.
The trio of Apollo
Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins and Neil Armstrong, the crew of Apollo 11, pose with a model of the moon in 1969.
Apollo 11's Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins stand by a mock Apollo capsule during water egress training in the Gulf of Mexico.
Rehearsal for landing
Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong poses with a landing simulator at the Lunar Landing Research Facility at NASA's Langley Research Center on Feb. 12, 1969.
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin stand in front of their Saturn 5 rocket at NASA's Kennedy Space Center on May 20, 1969, during preparations for their mission.
Checking out the seats
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin wear clean-room gear during a walk-through egress test in their command module on June 10, 1969.
Meet the press
The crew members of the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins, get comfortable during a press conference in July 1969.
Time for study
Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong reviews flight plans on July 14, 1969.
Checking the fit
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin get ready to train for extravehicular activity, under the watchful eye of chief astronaut Deke Slayton (right).
Here's the scoop
Neil Armstrong takes a photo of a sample that Buzz Aldrin is about to collect with a large scoop during a training session.
On their way
Neil Armstrong waves as he and his Apollo 11 crewmates head for the van that will take them to the Saturn 5 rocket for launch to the moon from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on July 16, 1969.
Fire in the sky
The Apollo 11 mission's Saturn 5 rocket climbs toward orbit after liftoff from Launch Pad 39A at 9:32 a.m. ET on July 16, 1969. This photo was taken with a 70mm telescopic camera mounted on an Air Force EC-135N plane. Onboard were astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin.
Shadow on the moon
Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong captures his own shadow on film while taking a photo of the lunar module on the moon's surface in July 1969.
A frame from a 16mm movie shows Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin setting up an American flag on the surface of the moon during the Apollo 11 lunar mission on July 20, 1969.
One small step
Neil Armstrong steps into history on July 20, 1969, by leaving the first human footprint on the surface of the moon.
Reflecting on history
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin stands on the moon next to the lunar module in this photo, taken by Neil Armstrong on July 20, 1969. Aldrin's helmet visor reflects back the scene in front of him, including a small image of Armstrong taking the picture.
Astronaut at work
Neil Armstrong is seen near the lunar lander and the U.S. flag in a picture taken by Buzz Aldrin on the surface of the moon on July 20, 1969.
Watching from afar
Ten thousand spectators gathered to watch giant television screens in New York's Central Park and cheer as astronaut Neil Armstrong took humanity's first step on the moon on July 20, 1969.
The lunar module, with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin aboard, approaches the Apollo 11 command module for a rendezvous on July 21, 1969, marking the first leg of the homeward journey. A half-Earth is seen in the background.
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin laugh along with President Richard Nixon aboard the USS Hornet. The president was on hand to greet the astronauts after their splashdown in the Pacific on July 24, 1969. The crew was in a quarantine facility as a post-flight precaution.
Laughing at quarantine
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin are in high spirits as they look out through the window of their mobile quarantine van on July 24, 1969.
Neil Armstrong greets his son Mark on the telephone intercom system while his wife Janet and his other son Eric look on at Ellington Air Force Base in Texas on July 27, 1969. Armstrong and his crewmates were quarantined for 21 days after landing back on Earth, out of concern that they might have brought harmful germs back with them from the moon.
Free at last
Neil Armstrong greets friends after being released from quarantine on Aug. 10, 1969.
Apollo 11 astronauts Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong wave to crowds as they celebrate their return from the moon in a New York ticker-tape parade on Aug. 13, 1969.
Behind a desk
After Apollo 11, Neil Armstrong was appointed deputy associate administrator for aeronautics at NASA Headquarters in Washington. In this picture, Armstrong is seen in his Washington office on July 23, 1970. He resigned from NASA in 1971, and became active in academia and the corporate world.
Dealing with tragedy
After the shuttle Challenger exploded in 1986, Neil Armstrong was chosen to serve as the vice chairman of the presidential commission set up to investigate the tragedy. Armstrong is seen here listening to testimony before the commission in Washington on Feb. 11, 1986. Another member of the commission, David Acheson, listens in the background.
30 years later
Neil Armstrong is awarded the Samuel P. Langley Medal in front of the Apollo 11 command module at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, during a ceremony on July 20, 1999, marking the 30th anniversary of the first moon landing. Vice President Al Gore, applauding at right, presented medals to Armstrong as well as to Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins.
A piece of history
Museumgoers walk around the Apollo 11 command module at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington on July 16, 2009, the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11's launch.
40 years later
Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins stand in front of a lunar module exhibit at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington on July 19, 2009, the eve of the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
Hailed by the chief
President Barack Obama speaks with Neil Armstrong and fellow Apollo 11 crew members Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins during an Oval Office meeting on July 20, 2009, the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing.
Hero on the Hill
Retired NASA astronaut Neil Armstrong is welcomed by Norman Augustine (left), chairman of the Review of U.S. Human Space Flight Plans Committee, and retired astronaut Eugene Cernan (obscured), commander of Apollo 17 mission, before the three testified on Capitol Hill on May 12, 2010. Armstong, Cernan and Augustine testified before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee on the future of U.S. human spaceflight. During his testimony, Armstrong said he was "not confident" about the commercial market's ability to provide safe and reliable hardware for human spaceflight.
Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong is presented with the Congressional Gold Medal during a ceremony in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol on Nov. 16, 2011. The gold medals were presented to Armstrong and his fellow crew members from Apollo 11, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin, and to retired senator-astronaut John Glenn, the first American to go into Earth orbit.
Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong speaks during a celebration dinner at Ohio State University in Columbus, marking the 50th anniversary of retired senator-astronaut John Glenn's historic flight aboard Friendship 7. It was one of the last high-profile public events Armstrong attended.