What Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin Almost Forgot to Leave on the Moon: Kansan Discovers Apollo 11 Untold Story

June 10, 2009

LEAWOOD, Kan., June 10 /PRNewswire/ — Forty years ago, the Apollo 11 astronauts were completing their checklist to leave the Moon when they discovered that they had forgotten something. Buzz Aldrin had already climbed back into the lunar module, Eagle, when Armstrong reminded him about a small package that contained encrypted messages on a tiny disc. Aldrin quickly remembered that he had it in his sleeve pocket, removed it, and threw it onto the Moon’s Sea of Tranquility.

The astronauts left the Stars and Stripes, a plaque declaring “We Came in Peace for All Mankind,” and a tiny silicon disc with goodwill messages in native languages from many world leaders. As U.S. State Department officials scrambled to solicit messages of goodwill from many nations, engineers used the latest technology in 1969 to enshrine the messages on material suitable for the harsh lunar environment. NASA officials wanted to balance “good taste” from a world perspective, without implying U.S. sovereignty on the Moon.

These are some of the topics that are explored in the acclaimed book “We Came in Peace for all Mankind: The Untold Story of the Apollo 11 Silicon Disc” by Tahir Rahman. Rahman reveals the story of the messages from leaders such as Pope Paul VI, Indira Gandhi, and the Shah of Iran that are enshrined on the disc. Rahman grew up in Haysville, Kansas and he is currently a physician in Overland Park, Kansas. He stated, “I love Kansas because you can see a great sky at night, and it inspired me to learn more about space.”

In a recent interview, Buzz Aldrin stated, “Neil Armstrong and I almost forgot to leave the silicon disc on the Moon, but no one should forget the messages beautifully portrayed in Rahman’s book ‘We Came in Peace for All Mankind.’ The disc will last on the Moon for a thousand years.”

Rahman will be signing books at the Leawood Town Center Barnes and Noble on June 13 from 1-3 PM and at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum on June 20. The book is also available at Amazon.com. Contact: info@silicondisc.com.

SOURCE Tahir Rahman

Source: newswire

comments powered by Disqus