Representative Sheila Jackson Lee

Representing the 18th District of TEXAS

CONGRESSWOMAN SHEILA JACKSON LEE STATEMENT ON THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE APOLLO 11 MOON LANDING

Jul 19, 2019
Press Release

For Immediate Release                                                                  Contact: Robin Chand

July 19, 2019                                                                                                   (202) 225–3816

Press Statement

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee Statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing

 

Jackson Lee—“For those of us from Houston, this moment is an occasion for particular and unique pride.  The flight to the Moon, and indeed all manned flights, have been guided by the brilliant and hardworking men and women of Houston, who, for close to 60 years, have been the steady hand, guiding manned space exploration.  I thank them for all that they do.  I urge all who will reads these words to maintain that same sense of discovery and exploration, and wonder what lies next for us.  And, I evoke President Kennedy’s admonition to us from 58 years ago, that we should not be motivated simply by what is easy, but that we should meet the difficult challenge and savor what can be accomplished by our collective efforts.  I congratulate all from NASA who have made the endeavor of space flight their life’s work.”

 

Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, a Senior Member of the House Committees on Judiciary, Homeland Security, and Budget, issued this statement on the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing:

 

“Since the beginning of mankind, we have been driven by curiosity and a wonder of what is next for humanity.  We have wondered about our place in the cosmos for as long as we have been able to look out into the night sky and see the stars.  And of course, we have been dared by our own sense of imagination and possibility to try to breach our gravity and the heavens.  It is with an awe of that sense of exploration that I commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. In September 1961, in my hometown of Houston, President John F. Kennedy stood and declared that the United States would send a man to the moon and return him safely to the Earth.  He implored us to do so, not because it was easy, but because it was hard.  In one-fell swoop, he harnessed our competitive drive and merged it with mankind’s relentless pursuit of discovery and information and knowledge.

 

“It was a bold proposition, not because of this challenge, but also because of our standing in the Space Race.  Just four years earlier, the Soviets had released Sputnik into orbit, as the first unmanned satellite, and in the process taken the lead in the global space race.  Our confidence shaken, we set out to work on the mission before us.  The 1960s were a tumultuous time in our pursuit of the moon’s surface.  Our path was not linear and not without setbacks.  Before we could celebrate the triumph of the Apollo 11 crew and the valor of Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, Michael Collins, we mourned the crew of Apollo 1, who died shortly after their capsule lifted off of Terra Firma.  

“Before we could walk on the moon, it was necessary first to orbit the Earth.  Indeed, the journey to Mare Tranquillitatis was long, and a collective, national endeavor.  The challenge would be the pursuit of three presidents until, on July 20, 1969, the crew of Apollo 11 touched down on the Moon’s surface.  The words uttered by Neil Armstrong were instantly immortalized, because, indeed, it was one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.  This moment was definitely a moment for joy and celebration for our entire nation.  But for those of us from Houston, this moment is an occasion for particular and unique pride.  The flight to the Moon, and indeed all manned flights, have been guided by the brilliant and hardworking men and women of Houston, who, for close to 60 years, have been the steady hand, guiding manned space exploration. 

“I thank them for all that they do.  I urge all who will reads these words to maintain that same sense of discovery and exploration, and wonder what lies next for us.  And, I evoke President Kennedy’s admonition to us from 58 years ago, that we should not be motivated simply by what is easy, but that we should meet the difficult challenge and savor what can be accomplished by our collective efforts.  I congratulate all from NASA who have made the endeavor of space flight their life’s work.”

 

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Sheila Jackson Lee, a Democrat representing the 18th Congressional District of Texas, is a senior member of the House Committees on Judiciary, Homeland Security and the Budget.