Have we landed on the Moon? Emphatically, YES WE HAVE!
Since I left the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, February, 1992, I have been asked numerous times; did we land on the Moon?? It always surprises me.
Please reader, understand loud and clear, YES we LANDED on the MOON!
I was there to monitor each mission and prepare a mission report for the Apollo Program Manager Admiral, Roderick O. Middleton. It was also provided to Dr. Kurt Debus, Director of the Kennedy Space Center, during that time in our space history.
I assisted in the preparation of each mission, published a pre-launch Apollo Mission Booklet that became a favorite of Walter Cronkite and other television, radio, etc., news people. They used it to report to the world.
I also monitored the missions with various tracking equipment that was, at that time, state of the art.
When I was still accomplishing college and university lecture tours, some still believed that no human being had ever landed and walked on the moon. It always amazed me. I was on duty for many hours during, in my opinion, the most important mission of NASA. The damaged Apollo 13 and the crew, was a life saving effort by all of us. We were very fortunate to have this crew brought back ALIVE after such a close call with their potential deaths.
The Apollo 12 was hit by a large lightening bolt while lifting off of Launch Pad 39. It had a short lived power outage that scared the HELL out of all of us, but, it was also overcome and that mission was highly successful.
The excellent TV program, Myth Busters in 2008, took on the subject of IF we landed men on the moon.
The Myth Busters, (MB), proved through many of their expert methods last year, that YES, US NASA Astronauts DID land several times on the surface of the moon during the Apollo Lunar Landing Program that I was ABSOLUTELY a part of for many years.
The MB final effort to quiet such questions took place at the Apache Point Observatory in Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
This advanced observatory has several dedicated astronomically trained personnel who assisted Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage. One was Dr. Russet McMillan, she is an expert using the powerful one gig watt laser instrument at Apache Point Observatory.
During the Apollo 11, Neil A. Armstrong, Edwin E. “Buzz” Aldrin, and Michael Collins mission to the Sea of Tranquility, 20 July1969, a small Retro Reflector scientific laser reflecting instrument was left on the lunar surface; another one was placed on the moon during the Apollo 14, Alan B. Shepard, Dr. Edgar D. Mitchell and Stuart A. Rossa landing at Fra Mauro, 5 February, 1971, which was a bit larger Retro Reflector, and the largest Retro Reflector was placed on the moon by the crew of the Apollo 15 mission, David R. Scott, James B. Irwin and Alfred M. Worden, 30 July1971 landing at the Hadley Rille/Apinnine Mountains area. My friend, Astronaut, Jim Irwin placed the Retro Reflector on the moon and activated it to assist earth scientists in laser experiments on earth.
Dr. McMillan, being urged on by Myth Busters, aligned the one gig watt laser device at the observatory and launched a lunar laser ranging beam at a sight on the moon that had no reflector. It did not return a receiving signal. She then aimed it at the exact location of the Retro Reflector that Jim Irwin placed on the moon during Apollo 15. It immediately sent a return spike on the recording instrument at Apache Point.
The Myth Busters stated emphatically, the USA NASA Astronauts landed on the MOON!
Clark C. McClelland, ScO, Space Shuttle Fleet, KSC, Florida