Buzz Aldrin’s Official Statement on the Passing of Neil Armstrong

  • Aug 25, 2012
  • By: Buzz Aldrin

I am deeply saddened by the passing of my good friend, and space exploration companion, Neil Armstrong today. As Neil, Mike Collins and I trained together for our historic Apollo 11 Mission, we understood the many technical challenges we faced, as well as the importance and profound implications of this historic journey. We will now always be connected as the crew of the Apollo 11 mission to the moon, yet for the many millions who witnessed that remarkable achievement for humankind, we were not alone.

Whenever I look at the moon I am reminded of that precious moment, over four decades ago, when Neil and I stood on the desolate, barren, yet beautiful, Sea of Tranquility, looking back at our brilliant blue planet Earth suspended in the darkness of space, I realized that even though we were farther away from earth than two humans had ever been, we were not alone. Virtually the entire world took that memorable journey with us. I know I am joined by many millions of others from around the world in mourning the passing of a true American hero and the best pilot I ever knew. My friend Neil took the small step but giant leap that changed the world and will forever be remembered as a historic moment in human history.

I had truly hoped that on July 20th, 2019, Neil, Mike and I would be standing together to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of our moon landing, as we also anticipated the continued expansion of humanity into space, that our small mission helped make possible. Regrettably, this is not to be. Neil will most certainly be there with us in spirit.

On behalf of the Aldrin family, we extend our deepest condolences to Carol and the entire Armstrong family. I will miss my friend Neil as I know our fellow citizens and people around world will miss this foremost aviation and space pioneer.

May he Rest in Peace, and may his vision for our human destiny in space be his legacy.


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475 Responses to “Buzz Aldrin’s Official Statement on the Passing of Neil Armstrong”

  1. Christian Krueper says:

    Even my 3 year old son, Nik, nows about the story of Appollo 11. Whenever you ask him “Nik, who was the first human on the Moon”, he answers: “Nils Armstrong”.
    “Yes, but it was ‘Neil’ !”.
    “But Buzz was the guy just in his back” he replies,
    and further: “And Michael flown the can”.
    He is 3, and its more then 40 years ago. That shows the marvelousness weight of was you three did.

    With due respect and great admiration.
    Frankfurt, Germany

  2. Mark A Evans says:

    Sorry to hear him pass on but he will be missed. I wished I could’ve met him. I saw the walk on the moon, followed the flight closely as most of the Apollos. I will always remember him–but I will also remember “Buzz Aldrin” as a favorite too; a genius and couldn’t pick a better man allongside Neil to walk on the moon.

  3. Larry g Wilson says:

    Just read your book. Will always have you in my heart.

  4. Maddie McClure says:

    When Apollo 11 landed on the moon I wasn’t born yet, but my mom was about six years old and she remembers it like it was yesterday,so when she heard that Neil had died she was sad,and I was too because I did a research project on you during the summer and was interested about you guys.Neil Armstrong truly was an american hero and will be missed terribly.

  5. Jacomus says:

    very touched by this loss, very good memories of you M Aldrin in Birmingham
    cookink cake (jacomus)

  6. Jacomus says:

    trés touché par cette disparition,
    Bersoult jean jacques France

  7. N.K.Jain says:

    Dr. Aldrin, this beautiful and emotional words that you have written to Mr. Armstrong, has got me in tears. Even today I remember the first time when I had the Apollo 11 Moon footage, at the age of five. I was, am, and will always be a huge fan and admirer of the whole Apollo 11 crew.

  8. Kathy Salazar says:

    I too am sorry he has left us. But I think its great that you are helping to keep the Moon Walk heros’ legacy alive to inspire more space exploration. Thank you.

  9. Leslie Cantwell says:

    A belated but hopefully fitting tribute to an America hero.
    Neil always said he was one of 30,000 people who made that first landing possible but three people actually completed the mission and two of the true American heroes who first stepped onto the lunar surface will live in the memory of mankind for eons to come…..

  10. Tony Prego says:

    Dear Buzz,
    I too was saddened by the passing of Neil Armstrong. My grandfather and I stayed up and watched the first steps on the moon and also Buzz’s leap into history. I will never forget it. You three guys are American heroes.
    Tony P
    Brooklyn, N.Y.

  11. Gorav Joshi says:

    RIP Neil Armstrong

  12. giovanni says:

    I was so fascinated by their mission that the day after I run the risk not to pass the mechanics exam, one of my first at the Politecnique, passing all the night watching tv…moments which last for ever…but they succeed and I and certainly many others succeed as well, in professional life. I feel I have to thank them for their commitment which helped us to grow up as humans and professionals, timelessly

  13. Nathan says:

    I am only 13 but you and your fellow austronauts still encourage me to do my best in school,i am really sad that Niel had to pass. he was a great inspiration.

  14. Thanks Buzz, Neil and Mike for opening a cosmic door. Let’s carry Neil’s legacy forward and explore the stars!

  15. I love that message by Buzz Aldrin. Do you think we will ever see this active and brilliant man again in life?

  16. Simon Matson says:

    Neil, Mike, yourself and all of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo Astronauts inspired me from a very young age to follow my dreams and become a pilot and an Aeronautical Engineer. I was so sad to hear of Neil’s passing, he will forever be my hero and a true inspiration to Aviation and humanity as a whole.

    My sincerer Condolences.

    New Zealand.

  17. Laure Baker says:

    Beautifully said Mr. Aldrin… thank you so much.

  18. Oliver says:

    Thank you Buzz, Neil and Mike for make us dream. I’m French, born in the 80’s but this was a truly inspiring event.
    Thank Buzz for all your remarkable work to promote space exploration. Thanks to the thousands of Americans working for NASA. From Neil to Eugene and all the others.

  19. Steven Miller says:

    Those who carried us to another world, have also carried the torch of dignity, quiet resolve and compassion as we lived an adventure through their travels and have seen the great frontier through their eyes. We are now better to have had those amongst us, and silently salute the courage of a national treasure, now at peace with the Lord.
    Navy Veteran

  20. True American Heros Then and now Buzz and Neil

  21. Juanjo Suarez says:

    The heroes of Apollo XI remain in space and time forever

  22. MBravo says:

    May he rest in peace. His journey is now complete as he soars to the heavens.

  23. sheila greer says:

    thank you , Buzz…we all love you as much…☺

  24. Vanessa Becknell says:

    Press On

  25. Iwan Griffiths says:

    Thank you Mr Aldrin for your superb tribute to Commander Armstrong. The three of you were true pioneers who inspired countless numbers of scientists and explorers. May Neil Armstrong rest in peace; his footprints on the moon will be there forever.

  26. Anonymous says:

    He believed in future. But humanity was so young. He waited for the better world. We never forget his words.

  27. Steve sudbrink says:

    as I was only seven years old when I was in the local ER getting a laceration sutured from an accident I remember yelling by staff that they had landed on the moon. The moon landing will undoubtably be noted as the single most monumental historic moment in human history.

  28. John H. says:

    We shall carry this torch of life higher Captain Neil, you inspired us exploring engineers.

    We may have been hibernating under the radar of humanity, but your passing is our great awakening.

    Your beacon on the tree of life, your guiding star, is the humble light that guides us. You have ignited the deep fire within our pierced hearts of humility, you have shown us great steps, and we are now beating the drum of exploration, in our deepest profound honor, you are the first sole print that has risen.

    Your drum of exploration will always beat within us.

  29. Captain Jack Y.McCarthy says:

    Since those days from the beginning of your historical flight and walk on the moon I have admired the three ofyou; and in my younger years how I dreamed to be part of one of those missions to the moon and beyon. What a sad moment to have heard of the passing away of Neil. I hope the good lord will keep you and Mike with us in good health to commemorate the 50th anniversary of your historical flight.Keep up the good work in promoting Space exploration and still be with us for the first human landing on Mars.

  30. Katy brennan says:

    Astronauts are heroes to me.I felt a part of my childhood torn from me by Neil’s passing into the Summerland.I still have a large photo of you,Neil and Mike that my late father (who was a lithographer) worked to print.I wish you and Mike and all the astronauts well.Blessed be!!!

  31. Rob Lee says:

    A true, true American Hero.
    God speed Neil.

  32. Volker says:

    Thanks Buzz for this wonderful words! Ad astra Neil Armstrong! We will never forget you!

  33. Mal says:

    What a fantastic tribute to a great man from another great man Well spoken Buzz. I remember that day well and continue to tell my grandchildren all about you were an inspiration to all of Mankind! Thank you

  34. Rashel says:

    Thanks Buzz….and yes we’ll miss Neil. You guys are all great …

  35. John Fernandez says:

    We returned home to Britain yesterday from the holiday of a lifetime that took us 5000 miles through 15 States in America. I think though, I will remember mostly, the night we were camped at Cape Canaveral waiting for the RBSP Launch on August 25th. We’d been there a day or two as the delays went on, taking day trips here and there hoping we’d still see it. We didn’t, but it seemed of no import that night when we returned to find Neil had died. I was 9 years old in July 1969 when I was allowed to stay up until 2 in the morning (UK time!) to watch the first men on the moon take those steps – I’m grateful that I managed to show my children where they left from (we’d been to Kennedy SC just the day before, and were camping a few miles away over the water) but saddened at the coincidence of our location that night. Engineers of my generation (I’m 54 tomorrow) tend to credit Star Trek and the Space program for their inspiration. I managed to thank Jimmy Doohan personally back in the 1980’s when he visited the TV studios I was working at. I’m pleased now to acknowledge the crews of Apollo, Gemini, Mercury and indeed the entire team, both ground and flight based of those who pushed back the boundaries of both space and more importantly imagination and made us all dare to believe.

  36. Carole A Hugo says:

    I am so saddened to hear of the untimely passing of Neil, my condolences to his family and yourself! You and Neil, stood on the surface of the moon, looking back at earth, what an achievement for mankind! Neil and yourself, were the two most admirable people, I would really liked to have sat down with and talked to, about that momentous occasion, so many years ago! Always and forever, my space hero’s! I still want to fly in a blackbird and join the first manned mission to Mars! Many thanks to you Buzz and Neil for your courage on behalf of mankind! Lets get NASA back on track, in memory of Neil, yourself and all the other astronauts too!

  37. otto konstandatos says:

    Dear Buzz,

    On the sad occasion of the death of Neil Armstrong, I would like to tell you what an inspiration you and your brother astronauts were to me. I was born several years after your historic moonwalk with Neil, but I grew up in the shadow of your momentous achievement. The exploration of space inspired me to study Mathematics and Physics, yet alas the course of life corralled me along more earthly paths.

    Somewhat like you, I would like to think, I gaze at the moon and think of what could have been if we had continued our brave push into space.

    Alas, we’re yet to return and it saddens me immensely. Best wishes and condolences to you and the Armstrong family from this space-cadet from down-under.

    Otto K.
    Sydney Australia.

  38. Jenny Marquez says:

    I believe Neil Armstrong now looks down with great satisfaction upon the stars he once looked up to in curiosity. Indeed, he did take steps where no human had previously walked. Upon a sphere along God’s fairway did he play like a child taking its first steps. With eyes like a childs fixed upon a Christmas tree did he drink in the wonder of his own home planet at a far distance. The explorer within him now sees the otherside of the stars and galaxies and I will bet he is still amazed.

  39. The world is now a poorer place with the loss of Neil Armstrong…… but a better place for having known him. RIP.

  40. Bob C says:

    The landing was a fantastic achievement, by all concerned. I do think this particular photograph is one of the best from project Apollo. It really conveys the feeling of success, coupled with tiredness, that the crew were experiencing. A fine man who will be missed.

  41. Ben Bernstein says:

    I was too young to see the moon landing, but I have always held the Apollo 11 astronauts in the highest esteem. You are and will always be visionaries and we will never see your like again

  42. Ralph Cutone says:

    Perfect…The Man in the Moon’s heart must feel the passing of a great American. The crew of Apollo 11 is an inspiration to all of us who saw their historic achievement. May the Lord keep all of you in his good graces….Thanks Buzz.

  43. Nick Penney says:

    When I heard the news I was devastated. I had wrote to Neil several times over the past few years. I Explained myself and who I was, and how he was one of my biggest inspirations. I asked him for an autograph so I could honour a childhood hero of mine with a tattoo of his name, I never got a reply. I came to the conclusion that I would have to meet him in person, for an opportunity to get an autograph tattooed. But to my biggest surprise, Friday, well after I heard of his death, I picked up my mail from the post office. In the stack of envelopes was a letter from Neil. Inside, a short but very humbling message, and an autograph written on transparent paper which can be used as a tattoo stencil. The man truly is a hero! May he forever rest in peace.

  44. Stephen Schaapveld says:

    Neil, Buzz and Michael, made this historic jouney over 40 years ago, now Neil has gone through ‘his’ most epic journey in to the next life. He has now see 3 worlds….

  45. Ted Rimmel says:

    What a beautiful tribute to a great man. Neil will be truly missed throughout the entire world. Neil was a great man, in the accomplishments all 3 of you achieved, as well as in his life beyond his NASA career. Neil, You, and Mike were my heroes all through my life so far. You guys inspired many of us in our lives. Neil was a class act all the way, as are You Sir and Mike.Let’s all remeber Neil in our hearts each time we see the moon in the sky.

  46. Evelyn Wolke says:

    A lovely tribute, and my sympathies on the loss of your good friend and comrade. You three especially have been my heroes and inspiration for many years, ever since I was glued to the television watching all of you every minute I could manage. Bless you all, and may Neil Armstrong rest in peace and his spirit soar as it always did.

  47. Kathy Buffum says:

    I just visited Wapakoneta, Ohio and was in awe in the way the people there honored Neil Armstrong!! Itwas very neat to see! I even met a lady working at McDonald’s who went to school with Neil Armstrong! May he rest in peace !!!!

  48. Dear Mr. Aldrin,

    Thank you for your warm words for your friend and fellow adventurer.

    Sincerely yours,

    David Batteau

  49. Michael says:

    I was lucky enough, at age 9, to sit with my father and watch history unfold before my eyes. I have, all these many years, looked up to you, each of you. That very evening. as I stepped outdoors and from that moment on. Many large words have been used to describe the three of you, I have but only one that comes to mind, to whom many will believe to simple – the three of you, in my personal perception, were/are the embodiment of what a “man” should and could be! Thank you! God Speed Mr. Armstrong, God bless you, Buzz and Mr. Collins!

  50. Brady Broussard says:

    What a wonderful statement.You 3 will always be remembered as true heroes!