Michiana residents remember man on the moon

For Michiana residents who were alive to witness it, July 1969 is a day they’ll never forget.

That summer, Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon.

“We’re all huddled together and it as just so exciting,” said Goshen resident Danae Wirth. “Just looking up and imagining when we looked at the moon, there were people on it.”

Wirth was only six at the time, but was captivated by the man on the moon.

“I’ll just never forget that day,” she said. “It made such an impression on me. Just the advances that man can make, even as a young child, it made me want to explore science more even at a young age.”

That curiosity and love of science stuck with Wirth over the years.

She’s now a district science teacher in Elkhart and has two Masters degrees in the sciences.

“I don’t think I ever would have done that if I didn’t have that kind of encouragement – not only from my parents – but watching those images,” Wirth said.

Valerie N. Williams is also a Michiana teacher and remembers huddling around a black and white television with her family, watching Armstrong utter his famous words.

“I couldn’t believe that we were actually there,” Williams said. “I went outside and kind of looked out and go back in. And it’s like, really? This is really happening?”

Both Wirth and Williams were saddened by the news of the famous astronaut’s passing on Saturday.

The Purdue grad was 82 years old and, according to family, died due to complications from a recent heart surgery.

Both women say he leaves a large legacy behind.

“I hear all of the conspiracy theories and I witnessed it,” Williams said. “And I think when people say it never really happened, I think that’s really putting down a really great man.”

Wirth and Williams both say Armstrong is one of the few true, American heroes.

“I think the heaves are sad today as well as earth for the loss of Neil Armstrong,” Wirth said. “When you look at the moon, think of Armstrong and think there were actually people up there.”

For Michiana residents who were alive to witness it, July 1969 is a day they’ll never forget.

That summer, Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon.

“We’re all huddled together and it as just so exciting,” said Goshen resident Danae Wirth. “Just looking up and imagining when we looked at the moon, there were people on it.”

Wirth was only six at the time, but was captivated by the man on the moon.

“I’ll just never forget that day,” she said. “It made such an impression on me. Just the advances that man can make, even as a young child, it made me want to explore science more even at a young age.”

That curiosity and love of science stuck with Wirth over the years.

She’s now a district science teacher in Elkhart and has two Masters degrees in the sciences.

“I don’t think I ever would have done that if I didn’t have that kind of encouragement – not only from my parents – but watching those images,” Wirth said.

Valerie N. Williams is also a Michiana teacher and remembers huddling around a black and white television with her family, watching Armstrong utter his famous words.

“I couldn’t believe that we were actually there,” Williams said. “I went outside and kind of looked out and go back in. And it’s like, really? This is really happening?”

Both Wirth and Williams were saddened by the news of the famous astronaut’s passing on Saturday.

The Purdue grad was 82 years old and, according to family, died due to complications from a recent heart surgery.

Both women say he leaves a large legacy behind.

“I hear all of the conspiracy theories and I witnessed it,” Williams said. “And I think when people say it never really happened, I think that’s really putting down a really great man.”

Wirth and Williams both say Armstrong is one of the few true, American heroes.

“I think the heaves are sad today as well as earth for the loss of Neil Armstrong,” Wirth said. “When you look at the moon, think of Armstrong and think there were actually people up there.”


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