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Amata commemorates 50th anniversary of Apollo 10 astronauts in American Samoa

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Office of the American Samoa Congressional Delegate) — This week, U.S. Congresswoman Aumua Amata released the following statement highlighting 50 years since the Apollo 10 astronauts came to Pago Pago after a successful mission that was instrumental in the U.S. space program’s rapid advances of 1969:

“On May 26th, we mark the 50-year anniversary of a fascinating historic event in American Samoa. Apollo 10 splashed down in the Pacific Ocean near American Samoa following a successful eight-day mission, and the heroic astronauts were brought to our own beautiful shores in Pago Pago for an exciting welcome celebration. Apollo 10 Commander Tom Stafford recently received a lifetime achievement award.

“This year marks the 50th anniversary of four back-to-back Apollo missions in 1969 that changed the world. The most famous is the Apollo 11 mission that landed on the moon, but just two months before it, Apollo 10 did the vital preparation work of approaching the moon and going through all the maneuvers except landing on the surface. Together, these events were a tremendous accomplishment for the United States, all of humanity, and the professionals at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

“The Apollo 10 mission resulted in a beautiful and remarkable photo of Earth from 100,000 miles away! This month, as part of a year of celebration, NASA released footage taken on 70-millimeter film, until now unseen by the public, showing the Apollo 11 mission in more incredible detail than ever. NASA, with budget proposals under analysis in Congress, is proceeding with planning for a return to the moon by 2024, and beginning development of a pursuit of an eventual trip to Mars.

“May God bless a new generation of astronauts as they stand on the shoulders of the great achievements of 50 years ago.”