JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Neil Armstrong passed away this weekend.
When Mort Crim heard the news, he immediately thought of 1969 and the days he spent with Armstrong and the rest of the astronauts with the Apollo 11 program.
"I had the rare privilege of being one of the space reporters anchoring the coverage for ABC radio," Crim said.
Crim, who now lives in Jacksonville, informed the nation over the radio waves about the Apollo 11 space program.
He then described what he saw from the New York Space Center when Neil Armstrong first landed on the moon.
"It was an exciting time and I thought, 'What a tremendous hero the man was. What courage it took for all those astronauts to do something that's never been done, to place their lives in such jeopardy for the benefit of science exploration and mankind.'"
Crim got to know the astronauts while living in Cape Canaveral prior to the launch.
He now has a commemorative album of the project. Inside it, he also has Armstrong's autograph. Crim also has a recording of his broadcast on a vinyl record.
"I don't even have a record player anymore," Crim noted.
About five or six years ago, Crim met up with Armstrong at AirVenture, an event for aviation enthusiasts. Crim said that was the first time he saw Armstrong since 1969. He also said that was the last time he saw Armstrong.
"He was a very humble man, very private man," Crim recalled. "Some people considered him stand-offish, but it was just his nature to be private. He just never took the attitude that he was a hero. If you asked him, he'd say, 'I was just doing my job.'"
First Coast News