“…before this dacade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.”
John Fitzgerald Kennedy (May 29, 1917 – November 22, 1963), the 35th President of the United States
Guess, who said that? Yes, it’s John F. Kennedy, the former president of United States. Kennedy announced the goal in the speech to a Joint Session of Congress on May 25, 1961. It was a big dream from the president to make a new breakthrough in science and technology and also for reasons of strategy and prestige in technological competition with the Soviet Union.
Some may ask, why choose the moon? Or why not climb the highest mountain? On his eternal speech at Rice University on September 12, 1962, he wonderfully said:
“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too”
You may watch his eternal speech at Rice University on September 12th, 1962 setting the goal of the space race during the 1960’s, below :
Each time I watch the video, I’m always amazed with the great vision from the great man all over the human history.
All of us already know, the “big dream” occured and has recorded in human history as Appolo II’s first landing on the moon on July 20, 1969, eight years after President John Kennedy announced the national goal. American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first humans ever to land on the moon. About six-and-a-half hours later, Armstrong became the first person to walk on the moon. As he set took his first step, Armstrong famously said, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
About John F. Kennedy
Born on May 29, 1917, in Brookline, Massachusetts, John Fitzgerald Kennedy was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963. Elected in 1960, 43-year-old John F. Kennedy became the youngest man and the first Roman Catholic to hold that office. He was born into one of America’s wealthiest families and parlayed an elite education and a reputation as a military hero into a successful run for Congress in 1946 and for the Senate in 1952. As president, Kennedy confronted mounting Cold War tensions in Cuba, Vietnam and elsewhere. He also led a renewed drive for public service and eventually provided federal support for the growing civil rights movement. He is the only president to have won a Pulitzer Prize, a U.S. award for achievements in newspaper and online journalism, literature and musical composition. His assassination on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas, sent shockwaves around the world and turned the all-too-human Kennedy into a larger-than-life heroic figure. To this day, historians continue to rank him among the best-loved presidents in American history.
Some Quotes by John Fitzgerald Kennedy :
“Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names.”
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”
“We need men who can dream of things that never were and not ask why.”
“If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity.”
Kennedy delivers the commencement speech at American University, June 10, 1963
President Kennedy’s Civil Rights Address, June 11, 1963
John F. Kennedy with Indonesian first president Soekarno
The Kennedy family in Hyannis Port in 1963