Thursday, July 16, 2009

40 Years Ago Today

I know exactly where I was 40 years ago this morning.

My family was travailing across the country to my Dad's new assignment with the Air Force - Hawaii. We were preparing to "suffer" for the country in Hawaii for three years. I was 12 years old.

The week of July 16 we were camping in our Apache pop-up camper at Grand Canyon National Park. We had a great time and even hiked about a mile down into the canyon and back. But on this day, 40 years ago, I asked my Dad for a brief break from "roughing it." He graciously took me to the Grand Canyon Lodge where we would have access to a television set. I had to see it!

That morning three men rode a huge Saturn V rocket up from the earth, and they were going to THE MOON! A few hours later they fired the third stage rocket again and left earth orbit for a three day journey to the moon.

As I have commented here before, I was a space nut. I knew the names of all the astronauts, what missions they had flown, and what they had done. I wanted to be an astronaut some day. I was so excited and thrilled to be able to watch something so historic as it happened.

Sometimes I miss that young fellow and his boundless dreams for the future. Although the dreams may have changed somewhat, I think he is still there deep inside. I am determined to find him and let him loose!