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And Back On Earth To Fill Up Forms

He had set foot on the Moon right after Neil Alden Armstrong (August 5, 1930 – August 25, 2012) on July 20, 1969. Instead of receiving him with flowers and garlands upon his return to the Earth, the US Customs officials asked him to fill up a form before leaving the airport! Buzz Aldrin (born Edwin Eugene Aldrin Jr) recently shared this experience on Twitter. Of course, he received a grand welcome later, but he was treated like a common passenger at the airport, immediately after his trip to the Moon.

Buzz Aldrin

As it is known, Armstrong and Apollo 11 Lunar Module (LM) Pilot Buzz Aldrin had become the first people to land on the Moon on July 20, 1969. The next day, they spent two and a half hours outside the Lunar Module Eagle spacecraft, while Michael Collins (October 31, 1930 – April 28, 2021) remained in lunar orbit in the Apollo Command Module Columbia. When Armstrong stepped onto the lunar surface, he famously said: “That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.” Along with Collins and Aldrin, Armstrong was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by then US President Richard Nixon. President Jimmy Carter presented Armstrong with the Congressional Space Medal of Honour in 1978, and Armstrong and his former crewmates received a Congressional Gold Medal in 2009.

The Tweet

Sharing his experience of returning to the Earth from the Moon on July 28, 2021, Aldrin wrote on Twitter: “Imagine spending 8 days in space, including 22 hours on the Moon and returning home to Earth only to have to go through customs!” He also shared the customs form on the Social Media. The form shows that he had come from the Moon. The date, too, is mentioned clearly… July 24, 1969.

The Form

There are three names in the form: Aldrin, Armstrong and Collins. The form was first posted on the official website of US Customs and Border Protection in 2009. According to NASA, it is a fact that the three astronauts had to fill the form at the airport. All had a good laugh about this incident at that time.

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