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Bush, astronauts meet to mark Apollo 11

July 21, 2004 at 2:57 PM

WASHINGTON, July 21 (UPI) -- President George W. Bush commemorated man's first walk on the Moon during a brief meeting and photo session Wednesday with Apollo 11 astronauts.

Neil Armstrong, uttering the now famous line, "That's one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind," stepped onto the lunar surface in an area called the Sea of Tranquility from a landing vehicle 25-years ago Tuesday amid a space race with the Soviet Union. Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin followed on the same mission, while Michael Collins was in orbit above the moon.

Images of the walk were relayed back to Earth and were viewed on television by millions.

Armstrong and Aldrin remained on the surface collecting rock and soil samples and performing tests for 21.6 hours. They also planted a U.S. flag and unveiled a plaque with the inscription, "Here Men From Planet Earth First Set Foot Upon the Moon. July 1969 A.D. We Came In Peace For All Mankind."

Bush met the three in the Oval Office. Details of their conversation were not disclosed.

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