Apollo may have started off as a technology showdown with the then-Soviet Union, but the worldwide enthusiasm for and awe at the first human landing on the Moon were big surprises for Michael Collins, the command module pilot of Apollo 11. Fifty years ago, Collins circled the Moon aboard Columbia, nervous that crewmates Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin might not be able to lift off from the lunar surface after their historic landing, and he would have to return to Earth alone. As the ...

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