Friday, August 22, 2014

Meeting Mike Collins 40 years later (post 66)

Michael Collins has led an active life after Apollo 11 but has avoided most public events in recent years (except meeting the President every 5 years on the anniversary of Apollo 11). One of his greatest achievements was overseeing the construction and opening of the popular National Air & Space Museum on time and on budget as its Founding Director. He is also an accomplished writer whose “Carrying the Fire” is widely acclaimed one of the best astronaut biographies. In later years he has taken up water color art. As a favor to fellow artist Kim Poor, Collins and his late wife Pat did appear at Spacefest 2 in San Diego in 2009. I had a chance to meet him there. I introduced myself and, to my astonishment, he said, “I know who you are.” It turns out that he was an anonymous member of the Space Unit astrophilatelic group in the 1980’s when I was editor of its newsletter, the Astrophile. I saw him again at the reception and dinner. Collins in many ways is a renaissance man—test pilot, astronaut, writer, museum director, and artist. If I could have lunch with any astronaut, past or present, Mike Collins would be my first choice.


#Apollo11Eyewitness  Post #66


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