Very sad news to pass along today … Reuters is reporting that astronaut and US senator Neil Armstrong has passed away at the age of 82. Armstrong, you should be well aware, was the first man to set foot on the moon and therefore is one of the most important figures of the modern age. This news is just breaking now so there aren’t very many details about his death but needless to say, this is a very sad loss for mankind. Click below to learn what we know about Armstrong’s death at this point. UPDATE: Neil Armstrong’s family has released an official statement, read it in full below.
Former U.S. astronaut, Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon, has died at the age of 82, U.S. media reported on Saturday. Armstrong underwent a heart-bypass surgery earlier this month to relieve blocked coronary arteries. As commander of the Apollo 11 mission, Armstrong became the first human to set foot on the moon on July 20, 1969.
Again, we don’t know the cause of death but at 82 I think it’s safe to say that he lived a very long and very important life. In 1969, with the eyes of the entire world watching, Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon and uttered the now famous phrase, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” … and history was made:
Armstrong went on to serve his country in the US Senate later in his life but he will forever be remembered as the first human being to walk on the moon. Wow. The world has lost a giant figure today. I can only hope that his last moments of life were spent with family and friends, surrounded by love. My deepest condolences go out to the Armstrong family today but, truly, we have all lost an important person today. Rest well, Neil.
UPDATE: Here is the official statement issued by Neil Armstrong’s family:
“We are heartbroken to share the news that Neil Armstrong has passed away following complications resulting from cardiovascular procedures.
Neil was our loving husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend.
Neil Armstrong was also a reluctant American hero who always believed he was just doing his job. He served his Nation proudly, as a navy fighter pilot, test pilot, and astronaut. He also found success back home in his native Ohio in business and academia, and became a community leader in Cincinnati.
He remained an advocate of aviation and exploration throughout his life and never lost his boyhood wonder of these pursuits.
As much as Neil cherished his privacy, he always appreciated the expressions of good will from people around the world and from all walks of life.
While we mourn the loss of a very good man, we also celebrate his remarkable life and hope that it serves as an example to young people around the world to work hard to make their dreams come true, to be willing to explore and push the limits, and to selflessly serve a cause greater than themselves.
For those who may ask what they can do to honor Neil, we have a simple request. Honor his example of service, accomplishment and modesty, and the next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink.”
And here is what Buzz Aldrin, Armstrong’s fellow astronaut on the Apollo 11 moon landing mission, has to say about Neil’s passing:
I am very saddened to learn of the passing of Neil Armstrong today. Neil and I trained together as technical partners but were also good friends who will always be connected through our participation in the mission of Apollo 11. Whenever I look at the moon it reminds me of the moment over four decades ago when I realized that even though we were farther away from earth than two humans had ever been, we were not alone. Virtually the entire world took that memorable journey with us. I know I am joined by millions of others in mourning the passing of a true American hero and the best pilot I ever knew. My friend Neil took the small step but giant leap that changed the world and will forever be remembered as a landmark moment in human history. I had truly hoped that in 2019, we would be standing together along with our colleague Mike Collins to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of our moon landing. Regrettably, this is not to be. Neil will most certainly be there with us in spirit. On behalf of the Aldrin family, we extend our deepest condolences to Carol and the entire Armstrong family. I will miss my friend Neil as I know our fellow citizens and people around world will miss this foremost aviation and space pioneer. May he Rest in Peace BUZZ ALDRIN