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Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Live from Abu Dhabi Connect the World takes you on a journey across continents, investigating the stories that are changing our world.

Friday's Connector of the Day: Buzz Aldrin

January 21st, 2010
03:08 PM ET

Arguably one of the most defining images of the 20th century was the picture of the first man walking on the moon.

Buzz Aldrin poses on the surface of the moon in 1969.

Buzz Aldrin poses on the surface of the moon in 1969.

Nearly 40 years later, people are still fascinated by the mission to the moon and the people who were behind it.

One of those astronauts was Buzz Aldrin - one of the few people to actually set foot on the surface of the moon.

Click here to visit Buzz Aldrin's website

As a young astrophysicist, Aldrin was hired by NASA in 1963.

Six year later, Aldrin, along with Michael Collins and Neil Armstrong headed for the moon aboard Apollo 11... the rest is history.

The legendary astronaut, who turned 80 this week, has continued to promote space exploration all these years later.

Last June he teamed up with rapper Snoop Dog to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Lunar landing in a music video on the popular website, http://www.funnyordie.com.

The rap video coincided with the release of Aldrin's book, "Magnificent Desolation" which covered everything from his Apollo 11 mission to his battle with alcoholism.

Here's your chance to ask former astronaut Buzz Aldrin your question.

Perhaps you want to know what it was really like on the moon or what it feels like to wear a space suit. What does outer space feel like? Was it hard adjusting to life back on earth?

Please leave your questions below.

soundoff (119 Responses)
  1. Michele

    Did being "out of this world" have any impact on your spiritual beliefs–or lack thereof?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:15 pm | Reply
  2. Andrew

    What did the surface of the moon feel like? If you could compare the lunar to surface to an earthly substance, what would it be?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:19 pm | Reply
  3. Rev. Darlene E.R. Resling

    Was there any sort of individual or communal worship of God that took place during the journey? While I realize many prefer private worship, I have always imagined that being in such a vantage point would call forth communal desire to share through prayer, song...or other creative expression. Thank you!

    January 21, 2010 at 6:24 pm | Reply
  4. OldKid

    As a kid I was glued to Dutch television with live coverage of the moon landings. In vacation, people were watching the events on TV's on the camping. It was live, it was thrilling. Therefore, I am completely amazed with the more or less destructive attitude, esp. in the USA, of people with all kinds of complot theories and denial of the landing on the moon. Maybe the educational system is doing something wrong. But what can NASA do to prevent a future denial in,say, the year 2040 of humans landing on Mars in 2025? How to counteract the 'worship of ignorance'?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:24 pm | Reply
  5. Barry Korcheski

    Hi Buzz, As an astro physics what are your thoughts on dark energy and dark matter. Combined it represents 95% of the universe. Is our universe merely a ripple in multiple universes connected by black holes? Will cosmological theroies and Newton/Einstein physical laws need to be modified?

    Cheers, Barry Korcheski
    Amature Astronomer
    Nelson, New Zealand

    January 21, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Reply
  6. Malcolm Light

    Dear Buzz,

    My wife and I wish you a very happy 80th birthday and many many more!

    You once met my cousin Noelene Kotschen in Johannesburg when you were invited to speak at a conference there.

    What is your feeling about the likelyhood of UFO's? From all your experience in space exploration and the many so called sightings,
    is their any truth in any of them?

    Best wishes,

    Malcolm Light

    January 21, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Reply
  7. Robert

    To expand upon Michele's question but change it a bit....Did you feel more "as one with GOD".. not separate from God "Made in his image""?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:32 pm | Reply
  8. Dave Matafka

    Mr. Aldrin,

    Why do you think it's taken the US so long to even consider returning to the moon? It's obviously the logical steping stone to exploring the solar system!

    P.S. You, Mike and Neil have been hero's in my eye's since I was 4 years old!

    January 21, 2010 at 6:35 pm | Reply
  9. Kevin

    Making things profitable obviously drives innovation, creates jobs and generally raises the bar for our civilization, what ways can humans profit (Financially and Scientifically) from Space exploration?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:40 pm | Reply
  10. James

    During re-entry, how violent was the ride? Did the Apollo CM rotate & shake a lot, or was it smooth sailing coming through the atmosphere?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:46 pm | Reply
  11. Zeljko Rakic

    As a part of the preparation for the mission Apollo 11, did you receive any information on what “we” know about the existence of other civilizations in universe and our material evidences of their existence, or that they are aware of our existence?
    Any other advice or instruction you might receive regarding the subject of extra terrestrials would be highly appreciated.

    Thank you in advance,

    Zeljko

    January 21, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Reply
  12. Sam Wellington

    Question for Mr. Aldrin,
    Was there a plan in case the Eagle failed to lift off from the moon? I do not suspect there was any possibility of a rescue mission; did you carry anything like a cyanide capsule?

    January 21, 2010 at 6:53 pm | Reply
  13. rick armstrong

    Dear Mr. Aldrin,

    you should head up a global initiative to make sure we all pick up after ourselves or at least create one dump to get picked up at a later date or what?

    January 21, 2010 at 7:01 pm | Reply
  14. Murray

    I heard that it radiation outside of earths orbital space area is so dangerous that no one would survive. Therefore my question an obvious one is did you actually go to the moon or was it staged. Otherwise why hasen't man been back.

    January 21, 2010 at 7:03 pm | Reply
  15. Jonathan

    Dear Buzz,

    I'm a senior at the George Washington University and I plan on going to medical school. However, I have always had an interest in space exploration and it is my dream to go up into space some day. What advice would you give to a pre-med student like myself who wants to get involved with the space program at NASA and hopefully become an astronaut?

    Thanks!

    Jonathan

    January 21, 2010 at 7:08 pm | Reply
  16. David

    Knowing that we do not have any technology to get us to another planet that may sustain life, do you still believe that we should be spending tax payers dollars to explore space right now or would it be a better use of these funds to spend it on education, housing, and mediacl care?

    I mean, even if we had a ship that could travel at the speed of light, you still could not live long enough to reach our nearest star...

    January 21, 2010 at 7:15 pm | Reply
  17. Jiacomo

    was there ufo's or aliens on the moon, i have see and heard several accounts of there being aliens on the moon who watched as neil armstrong set foot, as well as spacecraft on the far side of the moon

    January 21, 2010 at 7:16 pm | Reply
  18. Laker LA

    How do you feel about the development of the space tourism industry?

    January 21, 2010 at 7:21 pm | Reply
  19. Dallas

    2 questions pls

    1. Are you aware of any astronauts that were warned not to comment on anything they saw while in space?

    2. Did you or Niel Armstrong ever wonder, (while on the moon's surface staring back at planet earth), what you would do if the motor wouldn't fire or if someone locked the keys inside the LM while the both of you were outside on the moon's surface?

    January 21, 2010 at 7:24 pm | Reply
  20. Adam

    Mr. Aldrin,

    At any time during transit to or from the moon did you see anything strange that could have been of Extraterrestrial origin, eg lights, objects, etc?

    Thanks and kindest regards,

    Adam

    January 21, 2010 at 7:29 pm | Reply
  21. leo4972

    Was "one giant step" REALLY the first words or was there a comment
    about the surface of the moon prior to "one giant step?"

    January 21, 2010 at 7:40 pm | Reply
  22. Dennis Carey

    You must have had more than a few run ins with people who question whether you and the other Apollo astronauts actually went to the moon. How do these accusations make you feel? P.S. That was one hell of a punch you threw!

    January 21, 2010 at 7:43 pm | Reply
  23. Magellan

    Mr. Aldrin,
    Having dealt with persons both politcally and financially "in the know" and in authority at the highest levels, why is it, do you think, the people who have the power in those realms fail to see the opportunities in Martian exploitation just as persons failed to see the potential of the New World in the 1490's(with the exception perhaps of Queen Isabella of Spain)?
    Thank you for making yourself available to the general public to ask such questions!

    January 21, 2010 at 7:44 pm | Reply
  24. Christoph von Untermaubach

    If you could choose: would you prefer to live with or without gravity?

    January 21, 2010 at 7:53 pm | Reply
  25. Derrick Mead

    Happy birthday Mr. Aldrin.

    I wish to thank you and all the other astronauts for putting a human face on one of the magnificent accomplishments of mankind, to travel to and walk on a non-terrestrial object. Nothing short of inducing awe, at man's potential and his place in the cosmos.

    As I watched Apollo 11's mission, I couldn't help but feel overwhelmed by the accomplishment. I was only 9 at the time but I remember it as one of my best times.

    January 21, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Reply
  26. Lee SLee

    Hi Mr. Aldrin,

    Do you think NASA should plan another mission to the exact spot where you and Mr. Neil Amstrong set foot on the moon? Would it no tbe interesting to see if the flag, foot prints (shoe prints) were still there as they were in 1969 given there is nothing on the moon?

    January 21, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Reply
  27. Bernard

    Dear Buzz,
    I watched you on the Moon in 69, I was 25 then and I have often thought of you, especially as you have taken part in a TV show for teenagers in France, in 94. Thank you for that, for your kindness and for making us dream. You are a true hero and an example for generations.
    I know you have been asked the same questions all over again. mabe not these: Did you manage to keep your old friends? How did you manage to live a normal life? It must have been very difficult. I wish you many happy returns!
    B.Denis
    Metz
    France

    January 21, 2010 at 8:04 pm | Reply
  28. justsomeguy...

    Do you think NASA's manned space program help advance humanity into space or does it stand in the road of commercial space development?

    January 21, 2010 at 8:12 pm | Reply
  29. Spiral Architect

    Hi Buzz.

    A simple Q.: Did you leave your PPK:s on the Moon? If you did, did you have to? ( I know there's a couple of Hasselblad cams left behind, so... )

    Wish you the best! Keep punchin' the disbelievers in the face! 🙂

    ( And, I hope we'll soon se man on the Red Earth... )

    S.A

    January 21, 2010 at 8:14 pm | Reply
  30. Louise

    Wow- lots of good questions here or Mr. Buzz Aldrin. I would like to add a few.

    If I had the opportunity to talk to BA directly this is what I would ask...

    -How was it decided who would venture onto the moon first? Did you draw straws, flip a coin (haha)? Did Nasa decide before the trip? Was there some sort of protocal that had to be followed?

    -I wasn't alive yet, when you went to the moon. What did you and Nasa anticpate about the trip? Did you expect to come back alive, come back with an illness? How long did you know you would be going to the moon before you actually left (years, months)?

    -Can you tell us how you felt before and during the trip? Were you nervous, worried, excited?

    -I really liked someone's question that said what does the moon feel like. (Relate it to something on earth). Also- how about smells? I realize you are wearing a suit, mask etc. Any comments?

    -My husband sometimes mentions the theory (that someone else referred to) that we didn't really send people to the moon. All of this occured on a sound stage in LA. What do you say to these folks?

    -I also liked someone's question about your 1. what do you think about tourism to the moon? 2. Your spiritual beliefs (before and after the trip) and what are you thoughts about earth, galaxy, the universe? Do you belive there are other forms of life out there?

    -And one last question....are you coming to Vancouver BC in February for the Olympics? If yes, I hope to see you there. If not, will you be watching them on TV?

    What a neat opportunity and great forum to ask questions of someone that I admire and will probably never have the opportunity to speak to in person. Thank-you for providing it.

    Cheers!
    Louise

    January 21, 2010 at 8:52 pm | Reply
  31. Lance Allen

    Happy Birthday!

    My youngest son is 13 years old. With all of the 2012 end of the world hype has caused him to ask many questions about this. What are you feelings about this issue, and how have you dealt with this issue with your grandchildren?

    January 21, 2010 at 8:56 pm | Reply
  32. HEINZ KNOEDLER

    Sir,

    What you and your astronaut collieagues accomplished in your trips to the moon can only be described as extraordinary, admirable, and wholly worthy of emulation. Unfortunately, too many of our fellow human beings who seem to be misguided want to put the "Hand of God" into the equation that "led" to your successful moon landings and safe returns. I am not one of those, but I respect the right of every one to express his or her opinion. Science proves itself every day, yet no one has ever positively proven the existence of a Supreme Being with oversight over all. I realize that personal religious beliefs are private and one else's business, but I wonder if you'd express your feeling about the claimed existence of God and the alleged Godly influence in your space flight affairs?

    January 21, 2010 at 9:17 pm | Reply
  33. Juan Azpurua

    Mr Aldrin,

    Thank you for being available... I have two questions for you:

    1.- Once standing on the lunar surface, and looking at the black horizon with our spaceship earth on the background, what was the first thing that came up to your mind?

    2.- Did you get to keep a piece of the moon?

    January 21, 2010 at 9:20 pm | Reply
  34. John Pedersen

    I watched both the moon and the TV at the precise moment you stepped out onto the surface in '69. It's sad to read here such a high proportion of questions doubting whether you actually went. I can't believe people can be so easily led by half-witted conspiracy theorists to dismiss the greatest achievement of mankind.

    No doubt you are immensely proud of that achievement by all concerned. Are you amazed that you made it there and back with what these days must seem rudimentary technology, or has the technological revolution made it all the more difficult?

    Thanks for any insights you may share.

    I'm a fan, without a doubt.

    John Pedersen (Kiwi living in Australia)

    January 21, 2010 at 10:10 pm | Reply
  35. paul

    what make and model watch did you wear for the trip to the moon? also, i'm glad that you take the time to share your experiences with the younger generations that only read in a history book about man landing on the moon.

    January 21, 2010 at 10:16 pm | Reply
  36. Ryan Lynch

    I can only imagine how rigorous the training to become an astronaut was during your time, along with the fear that went along with such an "unknown," like lunar exploration. Were there ever any real moments of fear that made you question your commitment to the endeavor? If so, what were they?

    January 21, 2010 at 10:21 pm | Reply
  37. Edgardo Vazquez

    Mr. Aldrin,

    If you will have the opportunity, will you return to the moon?

    January 21, 2010 at 10:21 pm | Reply
  38. Bryan Bailey

    Dear Mr. Aldrin,

    As a kid, the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo astronauts were my heroes...nearly half a century later, you still are.

    I lived on the west coast – my dad worked for Space and Missiles at Lockheed – so he was clued in on space travel, and I'll never forget him waking me at zero-dark-thirty to watch the Apollo lift-offs. What a thrill.

    Thank you for your courage and everything you have done for this country. It's an honor just to post this email to you.

    Sincerely,

    Bryan

    January 21, 2010 at 10:31 pm | Reply
  39. Emre

    Mr Aldrin,

    1. Please do not consider this asker a UFO buff or a conspiracy theorist. But in your participation in the space program did you bear witness to anything that remains unexplained to this day, no matter how small or trivial?

    2. Was there anything you were advised not to comment on?

    3. What is the night sky like on the moon compared to a very clear summers day around the equator on Earth? (I am assuming all Apollo landings were in lunar (bright) daytime so the nightsky (stars) would not have been very impressive.

    Thanks, it's a priveledge to live in a time with you legends.

    Emre

    January 21, 2010 at 10:56 pm | Reply
  40. Danny

    I am currently reading your book Magnificent Desolation. Your honesty and willingness to share your journey – warts and all – is a fabulous commendation of you as a human being. My question to you is how have you managed to 'hang in there' – through the highs and desperate lows. How have you been able to hold on to your sense of self-worth, continue on when there seems no reason to, through issues like your struggle with alcoholism and the lack of support for your ideas on space tourism and Mars travel?

    January 21, 2010 at 10:57 pm | Reply
  41. David Healy

    If a tree falls on the moon, what sound does it make?

    January 21, 2010 at 11:17 pm | Reply
  42. Randy Schmieder

    I believe in it, but how do we convince people that we need to explore, to reach out and go– not because there are minerals, or new solutions to medials problems, or some other practical reason, but for the same reason we all climbed trees when we were young: because it is magic and it is alive.

    Is it hope we need?

    January 21, 2010 at 11:29 pm | Reply
  43. Richard - Lancashire, England

    Hi,

    Would you agree that rather than just being about scientific research, the much more important role of human spaceflight is to get a new generation of kids interested in science and space?

    January 21, 2010 at 11:33 pm | Reply
  44. Matthew Pringle

    Hi Buzz

    My question is this, as a pioneer of the human race and its achievements what do you see as the next great frontier and what do you think yourself and other explorers of space missed because of budget cuts and political issues.

    You are a true hero of the human race and ive always looked upto you.

    Rock on

    Matt

    January 21, 2010 at 11:36 pm | Reply
  45. Marisa Cuellar

    How did your family and friends react when you told them you were going to the moon?

    January 21, 2010 at 11:38 pm | Reply
  46. Robert

    When do you think we will go back to the Moon and go to Mars. Will it be done by one nation or do you see co operation as the only way forward.

    Thank you

    Yours Faithfully

    Robert

    P.s I think we all wish to see what you have seen, it must be the most amazing thing.

    January 21, 2010 at 11:42 pm | Reply
  47. Andy

    I know this is a sensitive topic, as I am a big fan of NASA, and wish that someday I could be a physician astronaut. So please, do not be offended. What are your personal feelings when people claim the apollo missions were a hoax? Having been to the moon, you must feel pretty proud and accomplished. Therefore, I am wondering what effects such accusations have on you.

    January 21, 2010 at 11:43 pm | Reply
  48. Katie

    What are your thoughts on the space program today-specifically your thoughts on Martian exploration?

    January 22, 2010 at 12:12 am | Reply
  49. Joe

    Mr. Aldrin, with all the doubters out there, doubting that you ever went to the moon, myself not one of them. Would it be possible for NASA to swing the hubble around and take a picture of the landing sight and capture a picture of old glory that was planted? Thank you and congratulations on your place in history.

    January 22, 2010 at 12:28 am | Reply
  50. Phil Molloy

    Buzz, a belated happy birthday! How do you feel about those misinformed people who think the Apollo missions were faked? I met one of these folks recently for the first time. I find this ridiculous viewpoint to be very disrespectful and highly insulting to you and your fellow astronauts, as well as the hundreds of thousands of other folks who made your amazing achievements possible. What's the best way to respond when someone expresses belief in these ridiculous conspiracy theories?

    Sincerely

    Phil

    January 22, 2010 at 12:32 am | Reply
  51. Phil Molloy

    Mr Adrin,

    A Belated Happy Birthday!

    If you could relive 5 minutes of the Apollo 11 mission, which 5 minutes would you choose?

    Sincerely

    Phil Molloy, North Carolina

    January 22, 2010 at 12:39 am | Reply
  52. Karen J. McLean

    Hello, Dr. Aldrin,

    As someone very much interested in space studies, the idea of space tourism is very exciting to me.

    The Eagle landed the same day that my mother discovered she was expecting me. I am nearly forty years old. Do you believe there's any real possibility of an average citizen like me being able to set foot on the moon in my lifetime?

    Thank you, and happy birthday! 🙂
    Karen

    January 22, 2010 at 12:42 am | Reply
  53. Milan Kopriva

    Dear Mr. Aldrin,

    Greetings from The Czech republic.

    How serious problem is claustrophobia, wearing the space suite, be sitting in small space of module for extended time and restricted even from possibility to scratch your nose ?

    Happy Birthday,

    Milan.

    January 22, 2010 at 12:43 am | Reply
  54. Gerardo Iglesias

    Dear Buzz,

    I recently read "Rocket Men", which answered many of the questions I had about the mission ever since I was a kid and saw you guys on the moon.

    I like photography very much, and I am always concerned about transparency and clearness of the atmosphere when taking pictures of far away objects. I can just imagine how clear your views of everything were while in space. I've seen your pictures.

    When you look up now days, how has your experience in space transformed your night gazing? Do you look up more than you did before? less? why?

    Thank you, and a very happy birthday to you.

    Sincerely,

    Gerardo

    January 22, 2010 at 12:53 am | Reply
  55. Scott C. Waring

    Dear Buzz,

    I read at "The Science Channel" That during Apollo 11, you personally saw a UFO, stating: "Now, obviously, the three of us were not going to blurt out, 'Hey Houston we got something moving along side of us and we don't know what it is, you know, can you tell us what it is?'. We weren't about to do that, cause we know that those transmissions would be heard by all sorts of people and who knows what somebody would have demanded that we turn back because of Aliens or whatever the reason is, so we didn't do that but we did decide we'd just cautiously ask Houston where, how far away was the S-IVB?"

    My question Mr. Aldrin is this, as you were over the moon, DID YOU SEE ANY NON-NATURAL STRUCTURES ON THE MOON, POSSIBLY MADE BY A SUPERIOR SPECIES?

    Thank you,
    Scott C. Waring
    Author of novels "West's Time Machine" & "George's Pond". Soon to release novels, "Dragons of Asgard" & "UFO Sightings of 2006-2009."

    January 22, 2010 at 12:58 am | Reply
  56. masila

    Hi,

    Is there an objective world/universe out there, independent of the entity that is obsercing?

    January 22, 2010 at 1:03 am | Reply
  57. Adrienne Palazuelos

    Dear Buzz,

    Greetings from Mexico. We met you and Lois several years ago in Puerto Vallarta We both want to congratulate you on your book, your birthday and all you have given to our world.

    Here;s a question - What do you think are the ramifications of finding water on the moon? Did it surprise you?

    All the best for your 80th year. We hope you have a Magnificent Celebration.

    Adrienne Bard & Roberto Palazuelos.
    Mexico City

    January 22, 2010 at 1:17 am | Reply
  58. John Dinwiddie

    I am very concerned about our priorities as occupants
    of a very interesting, dangerously threatened planet.

    NASA often appears intent on justifying itself by proffering
    heroic visions of space conquest, and the prospect of
    manned missions to Mars is the apogee of that sales
    effort.

    Please, Mr. Aldrin, use your considerable influence to
    discourage the abuse of space research as a kind of
    mass distraction from the real issue, that it is folly to
    spend billions on a journey to an orb that may barely
    support life when the one that supports us may not
    unless we address heroic engineering to its current
    plight. Your alliance with Bill McKibben would be appreciated,
    and I would like you to state your views on this.

    Respectfully

    John Dinwiddie
    Santa rosa, California

    January 22, 2010 at 1:21 am | Reply
  59. Lisa

    I am so worried about our educational system in the United States. In comparison to countries like China, we are so far behind in math and science. You inspired millions of children with your space adventures. What do you think we can do today to ignite that passion for math, science and exploration?

    Thank you,

    Lisa

    January 22, 2010 at 1:48 am | Reply
  60. Rob Martin

    Buzz,
    1. Do the conspiracy theories make you smile?
    2. Rumour has it that you were meant to get out first onto the surface. I think I remember you've debunked this before. Did it matter? And does the euphoria of the moment wash back over you now and then?
    3. 80 Years, it's a good innings, what's your secret?
    4. If you were asked, would you head up again now?

    Rob – Western Australia

    January 22, 2010 at 2:04 am | Reply
  61. Sean Bigay

    Buzz, care to answer two questions from a lonely old Trekkie? One small, one big.
    The small question: Whenever the topic of deep-space missions comes up, inevitably somebody asks about how to provide artifical gravity for the crew. These days I hear a lot about bicycle-driven mini-centrifuges inside the ship, but rarely about spinning the ship itself for gravity. Why is that?
    The big question: People talk about asteroids these days, and it's always about blowing the things up or otherwise keeping them from falling on our heads. No one talks about mining asteroids for valuable resources. Why is that?

    January 22, 2010 at 2:34 am | Reply
  62. ACA

    Hope you get to all the questions.......

    The technology used could be consider in the stone age compared to today’s computing power. Did you at any point in the program question the capability of the systems and the chances of success?

    I think this fact makes the missions even more admirable.

    Congratulations to the thousands of people involved in this incredible achievement

    January 22, 2010 at 3:06 am | Reply
  63. Sonat Schulz

    Happy Birthday Mr. Aldrin.

    How hard was it to relate back to the "usual life" when you came back to earth after realizing how small and unimportant we are when you stepped on the moon?

    Thank you.

    January 22, 2010 at 3:14 am | Reply
  64. Ellen Brundige

    What do you see in space exploration's future over the next twenty years? What would you like to see?

    January 22, 2010 at 3:47 am | Reply
  65. Dr George Roberts

    Buzz: Dr. Dick Boolution and I were friends and I set him up for the kids at Mirman to visit Kitt Peak National Observatory, including the JPL particularly the Galleo mission. As the provider of the M-5A biomedical fight experiment, which was fondly known as "urine dump at Sunset" (aka Scott Carpenter), I'm asking you now what happened to the samples you were supposed to bring back for spectro/nuclear analysis so we could compute your electrolyte loss due to exposure to zero G? Every time I went to MSC and gave a presentation to the entire astronaut corps Wally Shirah would get up and complain about the Urine experiment that the valve was too restricitve and the rubber that connected him was too small etc, so I went to the Trexler Rubber Company in Ravenna Ohio and asked the CEO to make a rubber worthy of Wally Shirah, which he did by diping a wooden madrel into a 55 gallon drum of latex making a Wally Shirah sized rubber (about 17mm long). So I took it to MSC and when I made my weekly presentation on the experiment , I rolled the rubber down the table, and that was that, from then on Wally was my buddy. On the otherside Chris Kraft called me up at 3:00 AM one morning and said the Borman broke a bag full of pee and that they were blowing the ball of urine back and forth between them on Gemini 8. So after that we designed and fabricated a plastic bag that "would not break" Thanks, Wally Shirah's, and Frank Borman's nemisis, and your friend George Roberts, PhD

    January 22, 2010 at 4:09 am | Reply
  66. Mauricio Castro

    Mr Aldrin
    First have a nice day on your 80th birthday
    I really do no understand why so many americans want to denied the fact of the apollo mission.
    Can you plase expalin us why such a denial can take place ?
    Why NASA do not explain all the mess the people are talking and writing all about?
    I was 19 as you were there , I was in germany studing german in Rotehnburg Ob de Tauber a very samll town and I watch in TV all the trip you made, very exciting. many thanks on behalf of humanity to take a risk. we have learn al ot from nasa experiments a we will continue
    meanwhile lets be close to god and lets contribute to a better world
    Mauricio
    El salvador

    January 22, 2010 at 4:17 am | Reply
  67. Stig

    Happy birthday Mr Aldrin!

    Having been on the moon every personal experience from there on must pale in comparison. Have there been other moments in your life that have given you the same rush?

    41 years on I remain in awe of the purpose, determinedness and courage shown by yourself and your colleagues. I'm hoping Clint Eastwood will direct a film about Apollo 11 before retiring!

    January 22, 2010 at 5:02 am | Reply
  68. GRAHAM

    If it were technically possible, which planet in the solar system would you like to explore and why?

    January 22, 2010 at 5:34 am | Reply
  69. Tommaso Salvato

    how was the tv studio like?

    January 22, 2010 at 5:54 am | Reply
  70. George Waddy

    Dear Mr. Aldrin, I wonder if you ever met my Dad? He was chief of electrical standards for the Apollo environmental system. His name was George Waddy.

    January 22, 2010 at 5:59 am | Reply
  71. Fred Stevenson

    The grandeur of the historic moment must have filled your heart with some measure of gratitude. Who were you most thankful to in that moment, NASA, favorite teacher/professor, family, country, God? What did that first step feel like, crunchy, hard, soft? What was the most unforgetable thing you saw while on the moon? Thank you for being up there for us all!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:00 am | Reply
  72. Jaime Mendoza

    When Neil Armstrong and you returned to the Lunar Module in order to return to the Earth you must have carried some moon dust attached to your boots, and that dust must have "contaminated" to a certain extent the interior of the Lunar Module. Was that dust a problem when you left the moon and entered gravity cero (visibility issues, etc)? Did Mr. Armstrong and you breathed air with that dust? If you did, was there any particular smell, or any health problem associated with that? How did you avoided to "contaminate" with moon dust the Command Module?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:01 am | Reply
  73. michael dubovick

    when you gonna come clean that the moon landing was hollywood at its best -to screw with the russians-and about the alien races that have contacted earth. happy 80th YAH BLESS YOU

    January 22, 2010 at 6:07 am | Reply
  74. Yuan Hengxin

    Dear Mr.Adrin
    Apollo missions have past so many years. Some people think it unnecessary for us to do so ,how about your family ?does all of your family think it worthy? if the chosen astronauts weren't contain you years before ,what would your feeling like ?
    Best wishes

    January 22, 2010 at 6:31 am | Reply
  75. Keira

    Hello (and TGIF),

    My question for Mr. Aldrin is - what is your opinion about NASA shutting down the space program? Is there an alternate way for space exploration without it?

    Thanks much!!!

    January 22, 2010 at 6:43 am | Reply
  76. Mark McLaughlin

    How odd was it having a horizon closer than that of Earth's, or being able to see distant objects without any of the softening that occurs in our atmosphere? Also, (and I'm guessing you've looked at the pictures) how does it feel to see the landing site through the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter?

    January 22, 2010 at 6:52 am | Reply
  77. S.W.

    Why are there never any stars in the background "sky" in the photos taken while you were on the moon?

    January 22, 2010 at 7:34 am | Reply
  78. Adrian J

    Hi Buzz,

    Happy Birthday and thank you for everything you have done for science and space exploration and for taking on the burden of fame that came with it.

    I would like to know if you ever kept a bit of moon rock for yourself? Maybe slipped it in your "pocket" or where given a piece as a souvenir?

    Best Regards

    Adrian

    January 22, 2010 at 8:03 am | Reply
  79. Aine Adachi

    Dear Mr. Aldrin ,
    I have 2 questions for you:What did it feel like to float around in space without gravity? And also, did you ever feel nervous while walking on the moon??

    Thank you!!

    Aine

    January 22, 2010 at 8:19 am | Reply
  80. Scott Bennett

    If the moon was made out of bbq spare ribs would you eat it?

    January 22, 2010 at 8:33 am | Reply
  81. Faizal

    What was it like seeing the earth from the moon. Did you see the earth as a crescent and how did that make you feel, seeing the Earth as how you shoudl be seeing the moon.

    January 22, 2010 at 8:42 am | Reply
  82. Agron Deralla

    Question:
    While exploring the surface of the moon and seeing the vast and lifeless landscape, where there any specific moments where you wanted to head as far out and explore every crater, every rock even the whole moon on foot or did you feel scared for very step that you made not to go wrong?

    January 22, 2010 at 8:44 am | Reply
  83. Maibam Louremba Meetei

    Thanks CNN foir this chance to ask Mr. Aldrin a question.

    Mr. Aldrin

    What was that truely unexpressable feeling which you felt as the first man on the moon?

    Thanks you and God bless You.

    Sincerely

    Meetei Maibam

    January 22, 2010 at 8:45 am | Reply
  84. Rene van den Abeelen

    Happy birthday mr. Aldrin!!!
    I was 12 when the both of you walked on the moon. Now I'm 53 and I doubt very much if I will ever watch tv images from the surface of Mars...
    Isn't it a shame it all goes so slow?

    Thanks & all the best from a grey Netherlands

    January 22, 2010 at 8:53 am | Reply
  85. Thierry Dubois

    Hello Mr. Aldrin:

    What went through your head immediately after you realized that you and Neil Armstrong had accidentally broken the switch starting the ignition sequence permitting lift-off from the lunar surface?

    January 22, 2010 at 9:01 am | Reply
  86. colin

    Hi Buzz,
    What are your thoughts on Nasa's overdue return to the moon, and any thoughts of an extention to the I.S.S. on the Lunar surface?

    January 22, 2010 at 9:09 am | Reply
  87. Emre

    Mr Aldin,

    Before actually landing on the moon and walking on it, did you ever have dreams as to what the experience would be like, and how did these compare to the reality of being on the moon?

    Kind regards,

    Emre

    January 22, 2010 at 9:32 am | Reply
  88. Stephan

    Hi Buzz, nobody with a brain bigger than a bird still believes you have walked on the moon! How did you mentally cope with this for all these years?

    January 22, 2010 at 9:52 am | Reply
  89. Mikael

    Dear Mr Aldrin,

    Have you ever seen anything out of the ordinary while being in space? Things that even up to now you cannot disclose?

    Thank you.

    January 22, 2010 at 11:26 am | Reply
  90. Ciaran

    What is the Moon?

    January 22, 2010 at 11:52 am | Reply
  91. Noma

    Dear Buzz,
    When will the next major space event (probably mars human landing) will occur according to you? And where should I find a job to be directly involved in it?
    Thank you and happy birthday. thank you for all the dreams

    January 22, 2010 at 12:00 pm | Reply
  92. Dan

    I love it when you punched out that douche bag reporter that was being disrespectful. Why do people so want to not believe that we went to the moon, its just a rock a little bit away from here. Im sure there were alot of losers that refused to believe Columbus about discovering the new world. The fact that we went to the Moon is just the beginning of what man can do. It must have been amazing to look up and see Earth. And as far as that reporter goes, that serves him right we should all be accountable for our actions. You act like dooche you deserve whats coming.

    January 22, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Reply
  93. Julien Reed

    Dear Buzz,

    What did it feel like being second rather than first on the moon.

    January 22, 2010 at 12:47 pm | Reply
  94. scarlet

    dear buzz

    happy 80th birthday

    my question is what does it feel like to go into space?

    please reply
    hope to hear from you soon

    love scarlet

    January 22, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Reply
  95. cam

    dear Buzz

    happy 80th bitthday

    my quistion is how is it like to walk and be on the moon?

    hope to hear from you as soon as posible

    From Cam

    January 22, 2010 at 12:58 pm | Reply
  96. Sascha

    Dear buzz

    I wish you a happy 80th birthday

    My quastio is how does it fell to be in a rocket start?

    Hope to hear from you soon

    Sascha

    January 22, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Reply
  97. seb

    hi Buzz,

    happy 80th birthday and happy new year.

    my question is how did i feel to be one of the first man on earth?

    please reply.

    from seb

    January 22, 2010 at 1:03 pm | Reply
  98. seb

    hi Buzz,

    happy 80th birthday and happy new year.

    my question is how did it feel to be one of the first man on earth?

    please reply.

    from seb

    January 22, 2010 at 1:04 pm | Reply
  99. seb

    hi Buzz,

    happy 80th birthday!!

    My question is how did it feel to be one of the first men on the moon?!

    please report back

    from seb

    January 22, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Reply
  100. Svante

    Dear Buzz [even though i don't know you.]
    How was it like going up in a rocket????!!! i really want to know. just in case i ever go into space.
    please reply right now.
    -Svante (you don't know me.)

    January 22, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Reply
  101. Svante

    Dear Buzz
    How was it like going up in a rocket????!!! i really want to know. just in case i ever go into space.
    -Svante

    January 22, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Reply
  102. killer

    dear buzzlightyear i liked you when i was small but now it is just weird
    ! you are funny

    January 22, 2010 at 1:14 pm | Reply
  103. Chris from Budapest

    Dear Buzz,
    If space exploration and innovation continued after 1990 at the pace it did during the Cold War, where do you think we would be now? Much further on or not?

    January 22, 2010 at 1:23 pm | Reply
  104. Edward

    Did you see any UFOs on the moon or on your way to the moon.

    January 22, 2010 at 1:24 pm | Reply
  105. Chris from Budapest

    Dear Buzz,

    Can we ever re-ignite the public's interest in Space beyond just passing interest? And what would it take? Do aliens to visit? Or would the Earth need to be under threat from an asteroid? Or would a Mars trip do it?

    January 22, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Reply
  106. Paul

    Hi Buzz,
    May I hear in your own words what actually happened and what went through your mind during the lunar landing when Neil took over manual control? What did you say to one another during the decent and immediately after touchdown on the lunar surface? That must have been one a hell of a ride, I'm extremely jealous.
    Happy Birthday,
    Paul

    January 22, 2010 at 1:30 pm | Reply
  107. JOSE ALCANTARA

    Will the United States set a "colony" on the moon surface before
    half of this century? I won't be here, but I'd like to know before I
    leave the planet EARTH for ever.

    Jose Alcantara

    January 22, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Reply
  108. Renn Loren

    Happy Birthday Buzz!

    Thanks for the inspiration you have been to the rest of us who were kids when you and Neil landed on the moon!

    I just wonder what special emotions you and Neil felt when you viewed your home planet from the perspective of seeing it as a distant planet?

    Did you feel some type of extra-conectedness with all of humanity on some very fundamental "Earthling" level... As a human being above all else, nationality, race, creed, religion etc...

    Thanks,

    Renn Loren

    January 22, 2010 at 3:28 pm | Reply
  109. Mima

    Yes Mr. Aldrin, my concern is for the children of this country that has fallen behind in Math & Science. America has maintained such a segregated school system where the rich can afford to study @ good schools & the average american is left to well ! figure it out. This system has come back to haunt & destabilized the very thing we represent. THERTE IS STILL TIME TO TEACH OUR CHILDREN. Please convince the school system to do more. OUR CHILDREN ARE LOOSING THEIR ABILITY TO THINK.

    Happy Birthday

    January 22, 2010 at 3:33 pm | Reply
  110. Ricky

    Buzz,

    Did going to the moon help you with the ladies? What advice can you offer me? With the ladies, I mean.

    Ricky

    January 22, 2010 at 4:01 pm | Reply
  111. Jim

    In my opinion, your victory over alcoholism was a greater personal achievement than simply being part of a group of thousands of people involved in a moon landing. What is your perspective?

    January 22, 2010 at 4:39 pm | Reply
  112. Juan Diaz

    Mr. Aldrin:

    Did you actually get to the moon? Or was it all a prank orquestrated by the imperialist United States in order to defeat the Soviet Union in their race to get to the moon? By the way Mr Fake, did you know that NASA LOST THE BLUEPRINT TO THE ROCKET LAUNCHERS THAT SUPPOSEDLY TOOK YOU TO THE MOON? That is like going to Paris and said that don't have any pictures from your trip.

    January 22, 2010 at 4:51 pm | Reply
  113. Laura Bridges

    Now that you've gone to the moon, and to space in general, do you look at them any differently than you did before you went?

    And what was your favorite part of going to the moon? What's your favorite area of it?

    PS. You already know this, but you're one of my heroes. =)

    January 22, 2010 at 8:27 pm | Reply
  114. Russ

    At 13, touch down at Tranquility base was a life changer.
    Can't top great Apollo questions above, watch?, smells lunar dust?.

    We need to get going with something, is Bush's vision really the way to go? Orion seems a familiar story looking for a reasonable plot.

    Happy Birthday!

    January 22, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Reply
  115. Thomas Mathew

    Do you find any other giant leap mankind has made during the last 40 years ,which is comparable to your feat of landing on the moon?

    January 23, 2010 at 5:08 am | Reply
  116. John Windsor III

    I grew up going to Roman Catholic Mass, and Catholic school through the eighth grade in, Monongah and Fairmont, WV 26554. I met my friend Peggy Lee in the eighth grade, as we went through high school together, and I was the equipment manager of, Football, Basketball, and Track from, 1979-1982. After high school in, Fairmont, WV I tried Assembly of God religion, to learn more about Jesus Christ with my friend Peggy in 1983. By 2001 in Morgantown, WV when I attended the First Presbyterian Church on Spruce Street, I decided to attend a Unitarian Service in Morgantown, WV and that evening I attended a Pagan ritual, and looking on the internet for witch groups, I met a lady who's a witch, working in a local Toronto, Ontario hospital with cancer patients, and she comes home a lot in the underground part of the city. She told me she's divorced, with a little boy who she loves very much, and has a gay friend she see's every once in a while, as I haven't heard from her in two years and miss her. She hasn't casted any spells in a long time. In Fairmont, WV there was a radio AM station on the 92 dial with Frank Lee, Peggys father, who died ten years ago or longer, and her Mother just died a few years from now. WMMN is now owned by WTCS on the east side of town, whos owner used to be the mayor of Fairmont, WV. I was very interested in radio announcing after school with, Columbia School of Broadcasting in, May 1987 but they wouldn't hire me at, WTCS because of my brain injury in October 1968. And finally, this past Tuesday I saw the show, Supernatural on TNT, and Brian from Fairchance, PA. didn't watch that episode. I told him I did, as this was about a man who went blind, and recieved many gifts from God, so he started his own church, with the gift to heal people. While he was doing this another beleiver outside was praying with some kind of medalion, and then the grim reaper man was killing a innocent person, and when the medalon was broken, the grim reaper went away. I told Brian at the University Avenue McDonald's this reminded me of the Assembly of God service, as this is his church where he lives, and he got very quiet, walking away.

    January 23, 2010 at 7:08 pm | Reply
  117. patrick mugo

    dear buzz

    1. How did it feel stepping on the surface of the moon for the first time?

    2.Your collaboration with snoop dogg was amazing.Do you think of doing another song?

    January 26, 2010 at 6:32 am | Reply
  118. Rachel Waldron

    Buzz,
    I'm currently 16 and i remember when i was about 6 years old and you were on a television station and a couple of people got to call in and ask a question, i was lucky enough to get through and i'll never forget how excited i was i loved anything that had to do with space and i still do to this day. I remember asking what does the moon feel like and you said it was like a soft blanket i found that so amazing. I have another question for you, what was your favorite and most interesting parts of going to space and the moon?
    Happy Birthday!
    Rachel

    January 29, 2010 at 5:29 am | Reply
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