tv CBS Coverage of Apollo 11 Return to Earth CSPAN July 21, 2019 10:37am-11:28am EDT
apollo 11 astronauts from the first man mission to the moon. the broadcast included president nixon's reading, and interviews with the three astronauts, buzz aldrin, neil armstrong and michael collins aboard the uss hornet. here is the broadcast from july 24, 1969. >> do you have any indication of what the response to this
successful moon shot has been around the world? >> it's been tremendous. i don't know that anything has had as much of an effect around the world as this event. the president will comment on it, i think in his statement, but it's been tremendous, and i think it will be of particular significance in the field of foreign affairs. especially because of the attitude of the astronauts. >> mr. secretary, do you expect there will be some initial effect visible on the trip the president is now beginning? >> yes. without any question. and i'm sure that will be true in japan and other places. japan, reaction has been just great. i better go back -- >> thank you very much, mr. secretary. that was secretary of state rogers. standing and never the henry kissinger, the president's advisor on defense matters admiral mccain, commander in , chief of pacific forces and rear admiral davis, commander of the sea frontier. we have right now we have ben james, who is slowly making his way over to us. ben, what is the word from inside the facility on the condition of the astronauts? >> they appear to be in great condition. he's finished taking the blood samples and the swabs, so he's through with them and at the time i was talking over there a couple of minutes ago, aldrin is getting out of the shower.
armstrong and collins are already dressed. i talked to collins, he said he's proud to be back. they are all very happy to be back. >> i can imagine. >> and very proud, of course, of what they have accomplished through the whole world and they are especially proud of the recovery force. so that's a good thing. >> i don't blame them a bit. the recovery went off out a -- without a single hitch as far as we could tell. >> one of our best. >> i suppose it's too early, ben, to find out if there is any initial determination about the possible effects of the lunar excursion by aldrin and armstrong? >> yes. of course, this is a cursory examination, a normal physical. nothing very different from what we've done on all the flights. but the analyses of these things back in houston will be the determining factor but he says from a medical point of view at this particular time, they look great. they look just great.
>> this has been the report on almost every other flight, hasn't it? >> that's right. >> i hope it continues. >> was there any particular quote from armstrong, the flight commander? >> no, i didn't have a chance to talk to neil, and i didn't talk to aldrin. but i did talk to collins. that was the only who was one available. but they are feeling fine. he said they are all in great shape. they feel fine. they want wait to get home. >> ben, that will be great news not only for their families but for the whole american people. thank you very much. >> that was ben james, nasa public affairs officer who has given us that first, most encouraging word on the condition of our astronauts, armstrong, aldrin and collins, following their return from a their lunar flight and the initial medical examination inside the facility. very shortly we can expect president nixon, who has been
kept informed in detail of the developments out here on the flight deck, will be making his appearance also on the hanger deck and will be coming over to congratulate the astronauts. undoubtedly he also has received word that we just now received, that the astronauts are in good condition, happy to be back, and delighted with the recovery which went off without a flaw. we hear now it will be four minutes and president nixon will be out here on the hanger deck. the marine honor guard is standing at attention on either side of the door to the mobile quarantine facility. any moment now, curtains in the window over the presidential seal will be drawn back, revealing the three astronauts. ben james spoke a moment ago about the fact that one of them had already taken a shower. there is a very pocket size lavatory up in the forward end, and there is space for a shower.
it's not a full size shower but any means. it's sort of a very, very small size bathtub. not much more than a foot bath with a shower overhead so they , can take a shower. mqf is receiving ship's water at this time. but that will be cut off just before the mqf is offloaded at pearl harbor to be carted over to hickam air force base and flown back to ellington air force base in texas, at which point, the astronauts will be removed from the c-141, which flies them there, and another tractor-trailer, they call it a 40-k crawler, will be taken over to ellington to the lunar receiving laboratory. aldrin is down here now on the hanger deck. the tunnel, made of semitransparent plastic, is
established between -- from the door on the side of the mobile quarantine facility waiting only for the moment when , the command module will be brought on-board. the command module, when it is brought back to land, will go to downy, california, for a 21-day quarantine period and very detailed inspection. by that time, lunar samples, the lunar rocks that the astronauts brought back from the moon, will have long since been removed, and sent to the various scientific teams that have been waiting anxiously for the samples from our earth's planet, our sister planet, the moon, for an examination and detail of the lunar soil and lunar rocks and the other substances the astronauts brought back. also, removed from the command
module while it's on-board the hornet will be some of the astronauts' personal effects and a few other bits of material. they will be taken out by the nasa project engineer, and also by the astronauts. correction on something i said a moment ago. the spacecraft will be sent to houston, texas, not downey, california. at this moment out here, the dignitaries who are on-board with the presidential party are gathering. there is, of course, secretary of state rogers, who is carrying one of the hornets' baseball caps. -- the hornet's baseball caps. caps that the captain has been spreading around. the president has come down the escalator through the hatch to
>> the president signaling for applause from the crowd. there they are gathered in the window. pres. nixon: neil, buzz and mike, i want you to know that i think i'm the luckiest man in the world and i say this not only because i have the honor to be president of the united states, but particularly because i have the privilege of speaking for so many in welcoming you back to earth. i can tell you about all the messages we've received in washington. over 100 foreign governments, emperors, presidents, prime ministers and kings have sent the most warm messages that we've ever received. they represent over two billion people on this earth, all of them who have had an opportunity through television to see what you have done. and then i also bring you messages from members of the cabinet and members of the
senate and members of the house and the space agency, from the streets of san francisco where people stopped me a few days ago. y'all love that city, as i do. but most important i had a telephone call yesterday. the toll wasn't, incidentally, as great as the one i made to you guys on the money. i made that call collect if you didn't know. but i called three of the greatest ladies and most courageous ladies in the whole world today, your wives. and from jan and joan and pat, i bring their love and their congratulations. we think it's just wonderful that they couldn't have participated in television through this return. we're only sorry they couldn't be here. i've got to let you know a little secret. i made a date with them.
i invited them to dinner on the 13th of right after you come out august, of quarantine. it will be a state dinner held in los angeles. the governors of all the 50 states will be there. the ambassadors, others from around the world and in america. and they told me that you would come, too. all i want to know is will you come? we want to honor you then? >> we'll do anything you say, mr. president. pres. nixon: one question that i think all of would you say like task. as we saw you bouncing around in that boat out there i wonder if that wasn't the hardest part of the journey? did any of you get seasick? >> no, we didn't. it was one of the harder parts but it was one of the most pleasant, we can assure you. pres. nixon: i just know that you can sense what we all sense, when you get back now. you've been able to follow some of the things that happened when
you were gone. did you know about the all-star team? -- the all-star game? >> the capsule communicators have been giving us reports. pres. nixon: were you american league or national league? >> i'm american league. >> chaim nonpartisan, sir. pres. nixon: there is the politician in the group. >> sorry to have missed that game. pres. nixon: you knew that, too? >> we have not been able to control the weather yet. pres. nixon: i can only summarize because i don't want to how old up, gee, you look great. do you feel as look as you look? >> we feel great. pres. nixon: i understand frank borman says you're a little younger by reason of having gone into space. do you feel that way? >> we're a lot younger than frank borman. [laughter] pres. nixon: there he is over there. come on over, frank, so they can see you. and -- come on, frank.
are you going to take that lying down? >> mr. president, the one thing, we have a poet in my collins and he gave me a hard time for describing words of fantastic and beautiful, and i counted them, in three minutes up there he used four fantastics and two beautifuls. pres. nixon: let me close off with this one thing. i was thinking, as you came down, and we know it was a success. and it had only been eight days, just a week, a long week, but this is the greatest week in the history of the world since the creation. because, as a result of what happened in this week, the world is bigger infinitely and also, , as i'm going to find on this trip around the world, and secretary rogers will find as he covers the other countries in asia, as a result of what you've done, the world has never been
closer together before, and we just thank you for that, and i only hope that all of us in government, all of us america, that as a result of what you've done, we can do our job a little better. we can reach for the stars, just as you have reached so far to the stars. we don't want to how old any longer. does anybody have a last word? how about promotions, do you think we can arrange something? >> we're just pleased to be back and very honored that you were so kind to come out here and welcome us back, and we look forward to getting out of this quarantine and talking without pres. nixon: incidentally, the speeches you have to make at this dinner can be very short and if you want to just say fantastic or beautiful, that's all right with us don't have to think of any new adjectives. they have all been said. now i think incidentally, all of , us who -- the millions that are seeing us on television now and seeing you, will feel as i
do, and since our prayers have been answered, i think it would be very appropriate if the chaplain of this ship were to offer a prayer of thanksgiving and if he would step up now, chaplain, thank you. >> let us pray. lord god, our heavenly father, our minds are staggered and our spirits exultant with the magnitude and precision of this entire apollo 11 mission. we have spent the past week in communal anxiety and hope as our astronauts sped through the glories and dangers of the heavens. as we try to understand and analyze the scope of this achievement for human life, our reason is overwhelmed with abounding gratitude and joy. even as we realize the increasing challenges of the future. this magnificent event illustrates anew what man can
accomplish when purpose is firm and intent corporate. a man on the moon was promised in this decade, and though some were unconvinced, reality is with us this morning in the persons of astronauts armstrong, aldrin and collins. we applied their splendid exploits and record our -- pour out our thanksgiving for their safe return to us, to their families, to all mankind. from our innermost beings, we sing humble yet exuberant phrase. -- praise. made a great effort and commitment seen in this project apollo inspire our lives to move similarly in other areas of need. may we, the people, by our enthusiasm and devotion and insight move to new landings in brotherhood. human concern and mutual respect. may our country apply leadership and backed by committed
followership, blaze new trails into all areas of human cares. see our enthusiasm and bless our joy with dedicated purpose for the many needs at hand. link us in friendship with peoples throughout the world as we strive together to better the human condition. grant us piece beginning in our own hearts and a mine attuned with good will towards our neighbor. all of this we pray as our thanksgiving rings out in the name of our lord, amen. >> amen. ♪ [star-spangled banner]
>> i don't think we have seen the president like that since his inauguration. he was talking to the astronauts in their sealed chamber. it looked like he was about to hug himself he was so thrilled. he appeared that way all day on the flight bridge, watching the splashdown but more especially when he confronted them through that little glass door. i thought he would take a little leap or something. here he is marching on the flight deck. he is bidding farewell to the captain who for the past two weeks has been one of the most overworked men we have ever seen. think, is taking him over to meet -- the sailors from the flight deck crew. courageous young men, the sailors. their world and their being in a
loaded flat top, loaded high tension wires, canada bolts and razor-sharp propeller blades. helicopter rotor blades and high powered aviation fuel. we have had tragedies in the men thed these young very dangerous lives. ship'ssame time the confident they will get them through. the president is going down the line shaking hands. a little grimy and a little dirty but no one deserves the presidential handshakes more than these young fellows to keep the planes flying. >> all these different colors of their jerseys represent the different chores they have on the flight deck dealing with ordnance or fuel or safety,
moving helicopters. >> he is getting near the rainbow side boys who have those different flight colors on. there they go right up the steps and into marine one. >> somebody asked the captain whether this was not the great inconvenience having the president and all his party on-board when he was trying to recover astronauts in the spacecraft and he said no, he thought it was an inconvenience for the president to have to get up before 5:00 in the morning. timesasked them many whether this impinged on his duties of getting faster not -- getting the astronauts back and he said the presence of the president helped increase the importance of the event. somebody asks of air officer who is in charge of all the landings and takeoffs whether this was not a big headache for
him to have the president who is now about to step on his helicopter. the other visitors. >> there he goes. he said this is like a quiet sunday afternoon for them. takeoff and landing every 12 minutes from this carrier. who was the chaplain who gave the prayer? he played president nixon in all the drills prior to the president's arrival. here toixon goes from the communication ship arlington which is about halfway between here and johnson island. he will refuel there.
after telling the men of apollo is one ofeir mission the greatest if not the greatest event in the history of man left from the aircraft carrier for his flight around the world. cbs news coverage will continue in a moment. cbs news color coverage of man on the moon splashdown and recovery continues after station identification. this is cbs. this is cbs news color coverage of man on the moon. apollo 11.urney of electric,by western manufacturing and supply unit of the bell system. the international paper company where good ideas grow on trees. and by maxim freeze-dried coffee.
here is walter cronkite. for word froming houston that neil armstrong's wife is about to come out of their home to say a word to a large crowd of neighbors and press. the president of the united states stood by and we heard a prayer of thanksgiving. were similar prayers being offered around this nation in this moment of excitement and the congratulations to people of the u.s. for the success of the mission of apollo thend congratulations to astronauts and the whole space team. led at thanksgiving was the new york cathedral. at gracehe services episcopal the cathedral in san francisco, community service --
bells chime from the churches along fifth avenue san francisco the bedlam of- noise in san francisco and neil nearly all the townspeople followed along through the streets. a day of great excitement and great joy throughout the united states and the world. haveives of the astronauts passed word out to the press .hrough a nasa spokesman mrs. armstrong we are told sat in the living room crowded with some 30 persons and showed no upward a motion when her husband was pronounced well ended down safely. she sat on the floor inside
-- in front of the television listened to -- ask for not james lovell who told them what was happening. james lovell who told them what was happening. mrs. pat collins was said to have been pleased but restrained that the splashdown work. she said she felt the greatest thrill at the first sighting of the craft. she had six astronaut wives with her in her home in houston. there were firecrackers on the
lawn of the altered home -- aldrin home. when heard president nixon say that there might be promotions in the wind for these fellows. now,seh rules up to perhaps all rules will be off with the flight to the moon. the rules have been a promotion after our first flight in space and each of these guys have had a flight in space before. that will move, the air force colonel up to brigadier general and lieutenant colonel aldrin armstrong -- they would move aldrin upped to brigadier general and mike collins upped to colonel, he is a lieutenant colonel now. that was a nice retort they came back with when they talked about the age and the woman had
suggested that they were younger when they went off. they came right back and said they always have been younger. they are all just about the same age. aldrin by a couple months is older at 39 and the other two are at 38. littlere wearing those buttons that the crew of the hornet had given them. the hornet had taken on three extra passengers out there none hundred 50 miles southwest of hawaii. an unusual place to take them award. let's have it once more as we wait for mrs. armstrong in houston. >> the relativity effects. function of your velocity.
if you travel at a high speed and come back to where you started eventually you will have aged slightly less than the people you left behind. is ae sort of journeys it relatively low speed so it is only about a millionth of a second of difference. astronauts are about a millionth of a second younger than they should be. they won't be until we start going to the stars that there may be differences of hundreds of years when people come back and they are still young man and find that even civilization on earth has passed away. wes won't worry us until start traveling to the stars and near the speed of light. >> you do not get younger you get less old. we can't go back unfortunately. >> you cannot turn the clock back. backinciple you could come a million years from now and the only a few years older than you were when you are starting. >> on the other hand whether you are younger or older you have seen i don't know how many times
more sunrises and sunsets than you are entitled to. every orbit of the earth -- after 1216 per day and days that is quite a few of them. >> crossing the international date line every 90 minutes. if you want the calendar back that's the way to get younger. >> we are waiting for mrs. armstrong of houston, waiting for word that she is leaving her house and television cameras are set up there on the lawn. presss from the world waiting to see the wife of the commander of apollo 11 on this great day. a historic mission to the moon. we reported earlier, congratulations are flowing in to washington.
this is the second time. they came the first time upon the landing on the moon and with the successful completion of the hasion the president congratulations from moscow. the russian news agency task reports this. we are waiting for mrs. armstrong and something occurs to me here. i got a nice wire from a general , the father of the astronaut who was the first to walk in space and lost his life be there in what was to first test flight of the apollo command module. it's almost a cliche but we say it frequently that these men did not die in vain but they really did not because they made a major contribution.
here's mrs. armstrong. >> come forward mrs. armstrong please. how are you? i would like to say to the president of the united states, president nixon, president , to all to all of nasa of the contractors that have helped make this flight successful, to the astronaut who madethe three men this historic flight, and to all the people of the world we thank everything, your prayers, your thoughts, everything. if anyone were to ask me how i could describe the flight i can only say that it was absolutely
out of this world. >> can you tell us how you feel? >> i am proud of him i guess. mrs. armstrong did you have any sort of good luck charm you might be able to tell us about? can you tell us what your husband took to the moon for you? can you tell us if he left anything on the moon? can you tell us what the president said in his telephone call? >> he told me he would be -- >> are you looking forward to the ceremonies? >> i think they will be outstanding. it is time for your husband to quit or do you think he should keep going? >> i don't care what he does. [indiscernible]
>> we have had thousands of letters from well-wishers from all over the world. [no audio] >> did you break out the champagne? >> yes sir. >> what are you going to say to him? >> that's private. [indiscernible] >> have you realize the historic nature of this flight as it went along or has it soaked in? >> i don't know.
[indiscernible] >> i would like you to have this surprise with love and gratitude. we also have red white and blue. [indiscernible] that mrs.ice armstrong could get flowers. a very kind thought and it expresses the wishes of all of us. we have the thought of moment ago about the astronauts and they did not die in vain.
quite frankly the program was in and it proved that the program was in trouble with that tragic accident. accidenttigator of the found problems that led to refinements in the program that has given us this almost perfect record since your first flight and leading up to this magnificent climax. >> a great sense of triumph. the word phoenix might have been another name. we did rise out of the ashes. the crew performed flawlessly on this mission. it is one of those textbooks like i enjoy seeing. gus, roger, and ed did not die in vain. cbs news coverage will continue in a moment.
a dream and the nation's pledge has been fulfilled. the lunar age has begun. with it is mankind's march upward into that endless guy sky -- endless sky. in a smallminor star solar system on the fringe of a seemingly infinite universe. this will be long and arduous and it will be pretty costly. we should not believe in the excitement of the day that the next trip or the ones to follow will be easy. we have begun with a small step for man and a giant leap for mankind. in these eight days of the apollo 11 mission the world was witness to not only the triumph of technology, and the strength of man's resolve and the persistence of his imagination. for all the time the moon has
dured out there it is tied at the heart, a symbol, beacon, a goal. man has landed on the surface of the moon and stabbed into its crust and stolen some of its soil to bring back in a tiny treasure ship to perhaps unlock it secrets. the date will be remembered as long as man survives. july 20, 1969. the day man reached and walked on the moon. improved by the things done by the best of us because if we are not able to land at least we are able to follow. they have let us further and higher. -- further and higher than we ever imagined we would go. speaking for all the staff here
>> 50 years ago on july 24, 1950 nine the apollo 11 lunar modules splashdown and was -- down and was recovered in the pacific ocean. astronauts were officially welcomed back to earth by president richard nixon. go to c-span.org and type " forlo 11" in the search bar our apollo 11 anniversary coverage. poll shows a third of americans have a favorable view of the trump administration's efforts to create space force. nearly as many americans have an unfavorable view. the largest group has no opinion. despite the near even split among all americans there are significant differences when you look at the partisan breakdown.
of republicans see 's favorably while under a quarter of democrats share that view. on spaces of our views force itself national security came in second hunt monitoring earth's environment when those surveys were asked to identify priorities for u.s. space policy. you can find all the results including attitudes towards nasa and its funding on c-span.org. tonight on q&a. >> we found that public officials, people who govern , it's not congress, it's not the president, it's bureaucrats. they write the rules and regulations that have the force of law. we found out they don't think much of ordinary americans. >> benjamin ginsberg professor of political science at johns hopkins university discusses his book " what washington gets
wrong: the unelected officials and what they think of the american people -- execute the law and the court reviews the law but that's not how the system works. much of what we think of as the law consists of rules and regulations written by bureaucratic agencies. by bureaucrats who are not elected by anyone and too often serve for decades. >> tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q and day. >> on tuesday the house adopted a resolution condemning the comments made about freshmen lawmakers. --ublican representatives four republican representatives voted in favor with the democrats.
the condemnation was in series of-- in response to a series tweets the president posted telling a group of progressive democratic congress women to go back to the " crime infested places from which they came." house speaker nancy pelosi gave voted todoug collins strike her words from the record. described ints this resolution were not just offensive to our colleagues they were inconsistent with the principles and values upon which this nation was founded. urging four female members of congress of color to go back where they came from, these comments are not only factually incorrect but also deeply hurtful and divisive. these were shocking comments even from an administration that rips children from the arms of their parents and warehouses asylum-seekers and facilities under inhumane conditions. we cannot let this moment pass without forceful condemnation.