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Where were you when man first landed on the moon?

At this week’s All-Staff Meeting, Patrick Curran began his slide presentation with an image of the Apollo 11 lunar module shortly after it landed on the moon. Our CEO used the slide to talk about the importance of innovation, one of our SPIRITED values. He observed how much innovation was in evidence when employees brainstormed dozens of new ideas during the recent IDEO workshops.

Apollo 11 blasted off on July 16, 1969 with astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin and Michael Collins. Four days later, on July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin set foot on the moon – the first humans to do so – while Collins orbited the moon in the main capsule. The astronauts erected a U.S. flag and placed a plaque that read, “Here men from the planet Earth first set foot upon the moon. July 1969, A.D. We came in peace for all mankind.”

Patrick asked everyone if they remembered, as he did, where they were and what they were doing when this technological and historic achievement occurred. He then paused, looked around the room, and reflected that many employees weren’t even born yet!

This is what Patrick recalls about July 20, 1969:
“I was sitting in my grandmother’s house – Nana, we called her – in North Portland, watching it on her black and white TV. The irony that they were exploring outer space and I was sitting in a room in which every adult was smoking enough to create man-made fog only came to me years later.”

If you were around on July 20, 1969, do you remember where you were and what you were doing when you saw the live TV coverage of the landing? We’ll collect those memories and publish them in a future issue of SPIRIT. Please email your response to

Thank you!