Confetti greets Apollo 11 Astronauts

Ticker tape, tissue and confetti greet the Apollo 11 astronauts -- from left, Edwin Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins -- on Aug. 13, 1969, along LaSalle Street in Chicago. 

This State Journal editorial ran on Aug. 15, 1969: Sometimes an expression of thanks is superfluous.

But for the record, in the aura of Apollo 11’s triumph, we’d like to add our thanks to the men from the moon — Neil Armstrong, Edwin Aldrin and Michael Collins.

Not just for their historic achievement, but also for lifting our spirits and our hopes for the future in showing what men can do with determination and courage.

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Their triumphal reception, from New York to Chicago to Los Angeles, was an outpouring of a nation’s thanks to them as heroes of the new Space Age. Heroes, yes; but even more so mere men who capitalized on the daring and accomplishments of other mere men who fashioned the gear that gave them an epic flight and a safe return. ...

It was a triumphal day for a nation and for three proud citizens of that nation.

Now on the moon, the United States flag stands stiffly at attention in a non-atmosphere where it cannot fly.

But it is well for us here below to remember that also on that moon is a plaque that notes that the first men there — on July 20, 1969 — made footprints not just for a nation, not just for the ages, but for “all mankind.”

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