Everyone has special dates in history that they can’t help remembering.
For my dad, it was December 7, 1941; the day Pearl Harbor was attacked.
For others, it was November 22, 1963; the day America lost John F. Kennedy to a sniper hiding in a book depository.
For some, the day that music died was August 16, 1977; when the King of Rock and Roll, Elvis Presley, took his final bow and “went home” to be with his mother.
Many shed a tear for the astronauts and one teacher that died aboard the space shuttle, Challenger, on January 28, 1986.
In today’s generation, the date September 11, 2001 will be a date that made America cry in fear and unite in patriotism.
For me, July 20, 1969 will be a date that I shall always remember. A date where we cried in joy, and shouted with pride, and stared in awe as the first human being stepped foot upon a celestial body other than Earth.
I remember gathering around the black and white television set my family had and watching in amazement as Astronaut Neil Armstrong said those immortal words,
“…that’s one small step for man…one giant leap for mankind.”
During the next few years, every school project I undertook had something to do with space travel or science. I read everything I could about men and women who had great ideas and saw them through to reality. I realized that so many things existed outside my small Mississippi town.
Today, as I was carrying out my duties at my job, many of the clients I service asked me for the date as they signed required paperwork. Normally I have to stop and think for a moment; but today, I quickly let them know the date, followed by “It’s Moon Day!”.
Many of the elderly people would say, “Oh yes, that’s right, I remember when that happened,” and then proceeded to tell me what they were doing on that date.
Yes, I too, remember what I was doing on that date. I was realizing that life was changing before my eyes, and reaching for the stars was no longer out of our reach.