A tribute to Neil Armstrong at the spot where he stood
Published at 15:03, Thursday, 20 September 2012
A BLACK flag? Yes, I thought of that as a tribute to Neil (Armstrong) for all his work by flying it from the top of Gilnockie Tower on the exact spot where he was photographed in 1972.
A black flag? I tried the shops in Langholm and Longtown – no luck. I duly received the black sample cloth which daughter Carolyn bought and stapled it to an 8ft pole from my garage.
I then tied it to the railing, finally fixing a circular silver card on top, hoping it would reflect the nightly moon.
In March 1972 I had driven up from our Surrey home, setting off at midnight with snow tearing across the car’s bonnet, arriving at the Cross Keys Hotel for breakfast, then spending a few hours snoozing in the car on the Kilngreen in Langholm.
After lunch, Neil had come out to meet the Toon folk and I asked him whether he got the tartan sample; no, the lunar module would never have taken off because of the weight of the mementoes.
I tried to get a sample of his moonwalk footprints. He said the boots were left on the moon; one of his compatriots laughingly said ‘Go back and get ‘em’. You can now see the footprint up in the Clan Room at Gilnockie Tower.
Another thing that my late wife, Judy, and I were grateful for was sitting in front of the TV set at 2am waiting another two hours for the lowering of the pressure inside the lunar module to equate with that outside to enable Neil to put his left foot on the moon.
During that two hours we established the Armstrong Clan Association to keep ourselves awake.
So, to end this tribute to Neil, I say ‘Rest in peace’.
E H Armstrong FSA Scot
Clan Armstrong Association
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