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Harrison Schmitt on Neil Armstrong

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Harrison Schmitt, former New Mexico Senator and moon-walking geologist, shared a nice remembrance today of his colleague Neil Armstrong:

One of my many favorite Armstrong memories from Apollo relates to a spur of the moment decision he made late in his walk on the Moon. We all trained to focus on collecting the greatest variety of Moon rocks possible in the time available. But, having already quickly collected one of the finest sets of lunar samples, Neil thought the partially filled rock box needed something more. He rapidly filled the box with a large amount of the Moon’s soil. This soil became one of the most important samples ever returned from the Moon. Neil’s 30 minutes of sampling decisions at Tranquillity Base remain the most productive half hour in lunar exploration.


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