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Apollo 11: a Former officer on the repair ship, the USS Hornet reminds us of the watch of the astronauts ‘amazing’ to return to President Nixon

to connectVideoAmerica is a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the landing on the moon

Thousands gather in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing; John Fisher reports.

On July 24, 1969, and Dick Powers, a 23-year-old Navy lieutenant, of the Apollo 11 Recovery ship, USS Hornet. Be picked up by the carrier, the master, in order to serve as an assistant to President Nixon), Powers describes the events of that memorable day, when the Apollo 11 astronauts back to Earth.

“Our ship, the USS Hornet, had just returned from Vietnam and we had it for about a month now, and we have decided to do a Apollo 11,” he told Fox News. “We have already begun to realize the extent of what it was like, everyone’s not going to happen.”

Powers, who was in the Navy for about three years, and was on the ship, the company’s Chief executive Officer (ceo) at the time of the restoration mission in Samoa. Nixon, he said, were on the ship early in the morning of the 24th of July, and remained on the Admiral’s bridge, for the greater part of the day.

“There was a lot going on, but we are in the position we were standing, waiting for the capsule to come down,” he said.

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“I was standing next to President Nixon, who was standing next to [NASA Administrator], Thomas Paine, and the looking at the capsule, out of the blue,” Powers added. “It was like a ball of fire – we could see the track from the right, on the horizon, and it was great.”

Dick Powers, who at the time was a 23-year-old U.S. Navy lieutenant, a photo of the bear, a baseball cap, which was presented to the Apollo 11 astronauts. (Dick Powers)

“We were looking at the gray sky as it’s kept, this beautiful bow is on the horizon, it was amazing, when you think about it, no matter how few people see that,” he added. “So there I was, a 23-year-old boy, in addition to President Nixon, see.”

The President, in accordance with the Powers, he was really anxious to watch the astronauts make their dramatic return to Earth.

Apollo 11 splashed down 13 miles from the USS Hornet, in accordance with the NASA, who noted that the original landing point is changed as a result of the adverse weather conditions in the target area.

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The USS Hornet was in the race to get to the area where the Apollo 11 capsule splashed down. “The helicopters were there, they had to drop the swimmers in the water as soon as the capsule splashed down],” Powers explained. “She just had to jump in the water, and then the floatation gear to be around the capsule.”

The Apollo 11 spacecraft floats in the Pacific ocean after a successful landing, as the frogmen prepare to open the door and remove all of the astronauts, Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, on July 24, 1969.
(Bettmann/Contributor/Getty)

After opening the capsule’s hatch, they carefully helped Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins, are in a rubber raft. “That was a very risky move, that the waves were five to six feet long,” said Powers. “By the time we got there, everything was taken care of.”

Landing a mile away from the USS Hornet, was not the only problem with that is that the crew of the ship would have had to deal with during the recovery phase of a mission. “8 pm, the evening before, and all of our communication was on and that we are in the middle of the Pacific ocean,” Powers explained. “We had a lot of challenges during that period of time.”

The next day, the repair went off without a single hitch, and a helicopter brought the astronauts back to the Hornet’s flight deck, where they received a rapturous reception from the existing crew members and NASA staff.

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“We saw them come out of the helicopter, it was amazing to see the three of them,” Powers recalled.

The Apollo 11 crew await pickup by a helicopter from the USS Hornet – and all four of the men pictured are wearing biological isolation garments. (NASA)

The scientists were worried that Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins may have brought pathogens to far side of the Moon with them, so they quickly entered a Mobile Quarantine Facility (MQF), a converted Airstream trailer.

The powers, however, had a few stressful moments, just before Nixon went down to talk to the Apollo 11 crew in their quarantine unit.

“I had it in my possession, of the three baseball caps for Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins, as President, Nixon would have to give it to them,” he told Fox News, explaining that the night before, he and some of his crewmates have had their pictures taken in caps.

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If the astronauts were to be brought back to the ship, the Powers went back to his room to get the baseball caps. “I’m going down to my cabin, and at the top of my desk, and all the hats are gone!” “he told me. “I will tear my room apart from each other, and I said to myself,” I am the one who is the President of the United States of america, on national television, because I lose the caps!’ I can’t tell you what goes through my head.”

In the helicopter, the Apollo 11 astronauts ‘ return to the USS Hornet.
(Dick Powers)

“I open the door and go back to the first floor, where my room-mate laughing, and said,” I think you are on the lookout for it!'”

The president, in accordance with the Powers, and was very happy with the successful end to an incredible mission. “He was very happy,” he said. “Richard Nixon talked about the Apollo 11 Moonshot, and the restoration of the best nights in the history of the world.”

The young lieutenant was the 37th president, to be extremely friendly and helpful. “Well, he was a naval officer during the second world War,” he said. “He walked up to the bridge and said,” I am the President, mr. Nixon, what is your name and where you come from, lieutenant?'”

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“It was very nice to me, so down-to-earth, and incredibly hot,” he said.

President Nixon, in a conversation with Apollo 11 astronauts in their Mobile Quarantine Facility (MQF) on the USS Hornet. (NASA)

Do not choose a tour from the ship in front of the astronaut’s landing and Nixon does not want to take any attention away from the Armstrong, Aldrin and Collins on their historic day. “It’s going to be about them, not about me,” he said.

Powers is in active service with the Navy ended in 1970, just a year after the Apollo 11 recovery mission, and after it, the USS Hornet recovered Apollo 12. After business school he went to in order to enjoy a career on Wall Street.

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President Nixon, the USS Hornet. (Dick Powers)

However, as he recalls the events of July 24, 1969, as one of the high points of his life. “That was the day, and at the age of 23 years, I have come to the face-to-face with the definition of” minister,” he said. “[Apollo 11], it is, for me, is the essence of American exceptionalism.”

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Be sure to catch the America’s News HQ, Apollo 11 and the 50th anniversary special on Fox News on Saturday, July 20th at 12 PM EDT.

Follow James Rogers on Twitter @jamesjrogers

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