Highlights Stennis Space Center Importance to 1969 Landmark Event, Future of Manned Space Missions

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VIDEO:  Hyde-Smith Marks 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing, Stennis Space Center.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today took part in a Senate commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the historic Apollo 11 mission, giving special credit to the role of the John C. Stennis Space Center to ensure the rockets could help land first Americans on the moon.

Hyde-Smith’s remarks to the Senate included her recollections as a 10-year-old following the launch while on a family vacation near the launch site.  She was among a group of Senators who recognized the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing in 1969 and the continuing work of NASA to ensure American advances in science technology, and discovery.

“Those brave NASA astronauts of the Apollo program continue to serve as an inspiration that we are capable of anything we set our minds to,” Hyde-Smith said.

“In my home state of Mississippi, we are very proud of the conspicuous roles our citizens play in our nation’s space exploration endeavors.  Since the earliest days of America’s space program, Mississippi has played an important role in the quest to explore the stars,” she said.

She cited the historic and continuing role of the Stennis Space Center in Hancock County to test the engines and rocket stages used for Apollo missions, the Space Shuttle program, and now the NASA Space Launch System.

“Today, Stennis is testing engines and rocket stages for NASA’s Space Launch System, which will again take humans beyond low-Earth orbit.  I am pleased that much like in the Apollo days Mississippi has an important role in the SLS program.  As we are fond of reminding everyone, ‘The road to space goes through Mississippi,’” Hyde-Smith said.

“As we mark this 50th anniversary, I am pleased that the Stennis Space Center is helping to inspire, encourage, and prepare students to pursue science, technology, engineering, and math-related careers—the talents we will need to get to Mars and beyond,” she said.

The text of Hyde-Smith’s remarks is available here.