Last Updated Jul 18, 2019 3:53 PM EDT
Fifty years ago this week, humans achieved what many thought could only be science fiction – landing a man on the moon. Over the next three days, the "CBS This Morning" podcast will travel back in lunar history with the CBS News archives, and reflect on the mission's legacy through interviews with key players in the mission.
Apollo 11: Moonshot and Liftoff
On July 16, 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins blasted off into space towards the moon, fulfilling President John F. Kennedy's Moonshot. Historian Douglas Brinkley discusses the significance of President Kennedy's ambitious goal -- landing a man on the moon and returning him safely by the end of the decade -- and how it accelerated the space race with the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The podcast also speaks with two of Apollo 11's flight directors, who share how even they thought JFK's goal was "semi-crazy." Also, hear what the three astronauts told "CBS Evening News" anchor Walter Cronkite and other reporters just two days before liftoff.
Apollo 11: Man on the Moon
Astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin became the first men to set foot on the lunar surface. Hear the CBS News special coverage from "CBS Evening News" anchor Walter Cronkite as he guides America through the historic first steps and ceremonial planting of the American flag. In a recent interview, command module pilot Michael Collins, who continued orbiting the moon while Armstrong and Aldrin explored the lunar surface, tells CBS News' Mark Strassmann why he didn't feel lonely as the only man floating in space and didn't envy his fellow astronauts. Plus, flight director Gene Kranz recounts the tense final minutes of descent to the moon as data and communications were failing in mission control.
Apollo 11: The Legacy and the Future
After eight days in space, astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins returned to Earth to a hero's welcome. In 1969, the three men sat down with CBS News for their first television interview. Now 88 years old, Collins reflects on the legacy of Apollo 11 with CBS News' Mark Strassman. Historian Douglas Brinkley and flight director Gene Kranz discuss what should be the space program's next moonshot.