On December 24, 1968, Air Force Col. Frank Borman, the mission commander; Navy Capt. James A. Lovell Jr., the command module pilot; and Air Force Major William A. Anders, the lunar module pilot, became the first-ever acknowledged humans to see the dark side of the moon and enter lunar orbit.
All of humanity around the planet was riveted to their living room television sets to see the live broadcast of earthrise that Christmas eve night. As a 9th grader in Louisville, KY., my family and I turned watched the Tuesday prime time 9:30 to 10 p.m. EST broadcast. After a year of American cities burning in racial unrest, RFK & MLK, Jr. assassinations, violence at the Republican Convention in Chicago, and the Viet Nam war consuming/dividing the nation, this moment not only captivated America, yet gripped the world as everyone gasped in awe.
I was proud to be hired at Eastern Airlines in 1977 when Col. Borman was Board Chairman, CEO and corporate President and got to know him on a first-name basis in the company’s yield management meetings, where I provided insights and recommendations.
The 50th anniversary of this amazing event for humanity is forever memorialized in this video that echoed throughout the world, and the fact that up to that point, more people then heard the human voice live than at any time in world history. Col. Borman, Capt. Lovell, and Major Anders left an indelible and inspirational imprint on this teenager. They deserve our gratitude for aptly choosing to recite Genesis:
“Frank Borman and Jim Lovell discuss the Christmas 1968 Genesis Reading” From July 28, 2017. Click here for the video.
“Remembering 1968: Apollo 8’s Christmas greeting from the moon” From CBS Sunday Morning, December 23, 2018. Click here for the video.
“Remembering the Apollo 8 Christmas Eve Broadcast” From the History Channel. Click here for the video.