I was one of probably 500 people who shook his hand that night and one of millions that shook his hand in the 43 years since he walked on the moon. He was a reluctant and gracious celebrity. With so many frivolous people famous for nothing other than attracting attention to themselves, it's easy to forget that one of the most famous men in history wished for nothing more than to be left alone to teach and live in the small Ohio town where he grew up.
We've gotten dulled to the incredible technology that we surround ourselves with every day. Most of us take more computing power to the gym than Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins took to the moon.
Times are turbulent now, but not any more so than the late 1960s. We went to the moon during all of that generational upheaval and there's no good excuse for why we don't have the world's most audacious human space program. Space programs employ thousands of really smart people who get that way with a great education. Those are just two benefits of space exploration.
Rovers are really cool and NASA's Curiosity mission to Mars is a great achievement. All things being equal though, footprints beat tire tracks.
When you look up at the moon tonight remember that 12 men from Earth left footprints up there. Most importantly, remember to say, "Thank you, Mr. Armstrong."