Remembering Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon

Remembering Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon

Died on Monday, January 16, 2017

Eugene Cernan in Lunar Module

Apollo 17 mission commander Eugene Cernan inside the lunar module on the moon after his second moonwalk of the mission. His spacesuit is covered with lunar dust

“We leave as we came, and, God willing, we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind.” — Cernan’s closing words on leaving the moon at the end of Apollo 17

Eugene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon, died Monday, Jan. 16, surrounded by his family.

Cernan, a Captain in the U.S. Navy, left his mark on the history of exploration by flying three times in space, twice to the moon. He also holds the distinction of being the second American to walk in space and the last human to leave his footprints on the lunar surface.

He was one of 14 astronauts selected by NASA in October 1963. He piloted the Gemini 9 mission with Commander Thomas P. Stafford on a three-day flight in June 1966. Cernan logged more than two hours outside the orbiting capsule.

In May 1969, he was the lunar module pilot of Apollo 10, the first comprehensive lunar-orbital qualification and verification test of the lunar lander. The mission confirmed the performance, stability, and reliability of the Apollo command, service and lunar modules. The mission included a descent to within eight nautical miles of the moon’s surface.

In a 2007 interview for NASA’s oral histories, Cernan said, “I keep telling Neil Armstrong that we painted that white line in the sky all the way to the Moon down to 47,000 feet so he wouldn’t get lost, and all he had to do was land. Made it sort of easy for him.”

 Apollo 17 Commander Eugene A. Cernan and the U.S. flag on the lunar surface.

Apollo 17 commander Eugene A. Cernan is holding the lower corner of the American flag during the mission’s first EVA, December 12, 1972. Photograph by Harrison J. “Jack” Schmitt.   Image Credit: NASA

 

Cernan and Evans in Apollo 17  Credits: NASA

Cernan concluded his historic space exploration career as commander of the last human mission to the moon in December 1972. En route to the moon, the crew captured an iconic photo of the home planet, with an entire hemisphere fully illumnitated — a “whole Earth” view showing Africa, the Arabian peninsula and the south polar ice cap. The hugely popular photo was referred to by some as the “Blue Marble,” a title in use for an ongoing series of NASA Earth imagery.

Apollo 17 established several new records for human space flight, including the longest lunar landing flight (301 hours, 51 minutes); longest lunar surface extravehicular activities (22 hours, 6 minutes); largest lunar sample return (nearly 249 pounds); and longest time in lunar orbit (147 hours, 48 minutes).

Cernan and crewmate Harrison H. (Jack) Schmitt completed three highly successful excursions to the nearby craters and the Taurus-Littrow mountains, making the moon their home for more than three days. As he left the lunar surface, Cernan said, “America’s challenge of today has forged man’s destiny of tomorrow. As we leave the moon and Taurus-Littrow, we leave as we came, and, God willing, we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind.”

 

 Apollo 17 astronauts Gene Cernan and Jack Schmitt sing while walking on the moon during the last Apollo lunar landing mission.  NASA.gov Video “I Was Strolling on the Moon One Day” the link on YouTube is as the following: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zl_VdN6rfrQ

“Apollo 17 built upon all of the other missions scientifically,” said Cernan in 2008, recalling the mission as the agency celebrated its 50th Anniversary. “We had a lunar rover, we were able to cover more ground than most of the other missions. We stayed there a little bit longer. We went to a more challenging unique area in the mountains, to learn something about the history and the origin of the moon itself.”

On their way to the moon, the Apollo 17 crew took one of the most iconic photographs in space-program history, the full view of the Earth dubbed “The Blue Marble.” Despite it’s fame, the photograph hasn’t really been appreciated, Cernan said in 2007.

This classic photograph of the Earth was taken on December 7, 1972.

Credits: NASA

“What is the real meaning of seeing this picture? I’ve always said, I’ve said for a long time, I still believe it, it’s going to be — well it’s almost fifty now, but fifty or a hundred years in the history of mankind before we look back and really understand the meaning of Apollo. Really understand what humankind had done when we left, when we truly left this planet, we’re able to call another body in this universe our home. We did it way too early considering what we’re doing now in space. It’s almost as if JFK reached out into the twenty-first century where we are today, grabbed hold of a decade of time, slipped it neatly into the (nineteen) sixties and seventies (and) called it Apollo.”

On July 1, 1976, Cernan retired from the Navy after 20 years and ended his NASA career. He went into private business and served as television commentator for early fights of the space shuttle.

Last Updated: Jan. 16, 2017

Editor: Brian Dunbar

Tags:  NASA History

 Jan. 16, 2017

RELEASE 17-007

NASA Administrator Reflects on Legacy of Last Man to Walk on Moon

The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden on the passing of Gemini and Apollo astronaut Gene Cernan:

“Gene Cernan, Apollo astronaut and the last man to walk on the moon, has passed from our sphere, and we mourn his loss. Leaving the moon in 1972, Cernan said, ‘As I take these last steps from the surface for some time into the future to come, I’d just like to record that America’s challenge of today has forged man’s destiny of tomorrow.’ Truly, America has lost a patriot and pioneer who helped shape our country’s bold ambitions to do things that humankind had never before achieved.

“Gene first served his country as a Naval Aviator before taking the pilot’s seat on the Gemini 9 mission, where he became the second American to walk in space and helped demonstrate rendezvous techniques that would be important later. As a crew member of both the Apollo 10 and 17 missions, he was one of three men to have flown twice to the moon. He commanded Apollo 17 and set records that still stand for longest manned lunar landing flight, longest lunar surface extravehicular activities, largest lunar sample return, and longest time in lunar orbit.

“Gene’s footprints remain on the moon, and his achievements are imprinted in our hearts and memories. His drive to explore and do great things for his country is summed up in his own words:

We truly are in an age of challenge. With that challenge comes opportunity. The sky is no longer the limit. The word impossible no longer belongs in our vocabulary. We have proved that we can do whatever we have the resolve to do. The limit to our reach is our own complacency.’

“In my last conversation with him, he spoke of his lingering desire to inspire the youth of our nation to undertake the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) studies, and to dare to dream and explore. He was one of a kind and all of us in the NASA Family will miss him greatly.”

For more information about Cernan’s NASA career, visit:

https://www.nasa.gov/cernan

-end-

Bob Jacobs
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-1600
bob.jacobs@nasa.gov

Last Updated: Jan. 16, 2017

Editor: Allard Beutel

Tags:  NASA History

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Gemini IXA Splashes Down

The Gemini IXA spacecraft, with command pilot Tom Stafford and pilot Eugene Cernan aboard, splashes down in the Atlantic Ocean on June 6, 1966, less than one mile from the prime recovery ship, the aircraft carrier USS Wasp. It was the first time a spacecraft descending on its parachute was shown on live television

 Looking Back at the Gemini IX Spacecraft                         “What a beautiful spacecraft,” said Gemini IX pilot Eugene Cernan during his two hour, eight minute spacewalk on June 5, 1966. He took this wide-angle photograph looking back at the window where command pilot Tom Stafford was watching.

 

 Gemini IXA Pilot Eugene Cernan Spacewalk

During his two hour, eight minute spacewalk on June 5, 1966, Gemini IXA pilot Eugene Cernan is seen outside the spacecraft. His experience during that time showed there was still much to be learned about working in microgravity.

 

 Gemini IXA Astronauts at Launch Pad 19                                                                               

After two postponements, Gemini IXA astronauts Eugene Cernan, left, and Tom Stafford, center, arrive in the white room atop Launch Pad 19 at Cape Kennedy Air Force Station on June 3, 1966. Stafford is presenting a large match to McDonnell Aircraft Corporation’s pad leader Gunter Wendt, far right.

 

 Apollo 10 Launch                                                                                                                         The Apollo 10 (Spacecraft 106/Lunar Module 4/Saturn 505) space vehicle with crew members Eugene Cernan, John Young and Thomas Stafford on board is launched from Pad B, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center at 12:49 p.m., May 18, 1969.

 

Apollo 10 Rollout                                                                                                                     Apollo 10 rollout from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) to Launch Complex 39B. This mission launched on May 18, 1969. The crew of Tom Stafford, Gene Cernan and John Young  

flew the “dress rehearsal” for the first human landing on the moon.

 

 Apollo 10 Lunar Module Ascends                                                                                                     After dropping down to 47,400 feet above the moon’s surface, Thomas Stafford and Eugene Cernan aboard the ascent stage of Apollo 10 lunar module, return to John Young in the command module on May 22, 1969.

 

Apollo 10 Crew

The crew of Apollo 10, from the left, Eugene Cernan, John Young and Thomas Stafford are photographed while at the Kennedy Space Center. In the background is the Apollo 10 space vehicle on Launch Pad 39 B, The three crewmen had just completed a Countdown Demonstration Test exercise on May 13, 1969.

41 Years Ago this Week – Apollo 17

During the second spacewalk on December 12, 1972, Apollo 17 Mission Commander Eugene A. Cernan is standing near the lunar rover designed by Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

Apollo 17 Launch

The huge, 363-feet tall Apollo 17 (Spacecraft 114/Lunar Module 12/Saturn 512) space vehicle is launched from Pad A., Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida, at 12:33 a.m. (EST), Dec. 7, 1972.

Apollo 17, the final lunar landing mission in NASA’s Apollo program, was the first nighttime liftoff of the Saturn V launch vehicle.

 

 Apollo 17 Mission Commander Eugene Cernan Drives Lunar Roving Vehicle                     

Apollo 17 mission commander Eugene Cernan drives the lunar roving vehicle during the early part of the first moonwalk at the Taurus-Littrow landing site. The Lunar Module is in the background.

 

  Gene Cernan at Armstrong Memorial  

 Apollo 17 mission commander Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon, looks skyward during a memorial service celebrating the life of Neil Armstrong at the Washington National Cathedral, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon during the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, died Saturday, Aug. 25. He was 82.

 

 Gene Cernan Speaks at Armstrong Memorial Service                                                                                                    Apollo 17 astronaut Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon, speaks during a memorial service celebrating the life of Neil Armstrong at the Washington National Cathedral, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012. Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon during the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, died Saturday, Aug. 25. He was 82.

 

 Apollo 17 Splashdown                                                                                                                          The Apollo 17 spacecraft, containing astronauts Eugene A. Cernan, Ronald E. Evans, and Harrison H. Schmitt, glided to a safe splashdown at 2:25 p.m. EST on Dec. 19, 1972, 648 kilometers (350 nautical miles) southeast of American Samoa.

House Hearing on NASA Human Spaceflight Plan

Apollo 11 Commander Neil Armstrong, left, and retired Navy Captain and commander of Apollo 17 Eugene Cernan, confer prior to testifying at a hearing before the House Science and Technology Committee, Tuesday, May 26, 2010, at the Rayburn House office building on Capitol Hill in Washington. The hearing was to review proposed human spaceflight plans.

 Apollo 40th Anniversary Press Conference                           On July 20, 2009, Apollo astronauts from left, Walt Cunningham (Apollo 7), James Lovell (Apollo 8 Apollo 13), David Scott (Apollo 9 Apollo 15), Buzz Aldrin (Apollo 11), Charles Duke (Apollo 16), Thomas Stafford (Apollo 10) and Eugene Cernan (Apollo 17) are seen during the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission press conference.

 

Apollo 10 40th Anniversary Program                                   NASA Apollo 10 Astronaut Gene Cernan, right, answers questions from the Newseum’s distinguished journalist-in-residence, Nick Clooney during a Newseum TV program celebrating the 40th anniversary of Apollo 10, Monday, May 18, 2009, in Washington.

Suited Up for Apollo 10 Mission – May 1969                            Astronaut Eugene A. Cernan, Apollo 10 lunar module pilot, is suited up at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida for a Countdown Demonstration Test during preparations for his scheduled lunar orbit mission. The other two crew members are astronauts Thomas P. Stafford, commander, and John W. Young, command module pilot.

Apollo 17 Launch                                                                                                                     A Saturn V rocket streaks toward space on the night of December 17, 1972, carrying the Apollo 17 crew, the last astronauts to explore the moon. Leaving the lunar surface, Commander Gene Cernan said “we leave as we came, and, God willing, we shall return, with peace and hope for all mankind.”              

Apollo 17 Launch                                                                                                    The huge, 363-feet tall Apollo 17 (Spacecraft 114/Lunar Module 12/Saturn 512) space vehicle is launched from Pad A, Launch Complex 39, Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida, at 12:33 a.m. (EST), Dec. 7, 1972. Apollo 17, the final lunar landing mission in NASA’s Apollo program, was the first nighttime liftoff of the Saturn V.

Apollo 17’s Moonship                                                                                    Awkward and angular looking, Apollo 17’s lunar module Challenger was designed for flight in the vacuum of space. This picture, taken from the command module America, shows Challenger’s ascent stage in lunar orbit. Small reaction control thrusters are at the sides of the moonship with the bell of the ascent rocket engine itself underneath.

Apollo 17 Crew                                                                                                                          On Dec. 19, 1972, the Apollo 17 crew returned to Earth. Apollo 17 was the sixth and last Apollo mission in which humans walked on the lunar surface. On Dec. 11, Lunar Module Pilot Harrison H. Schmitt and Commander Eugene A. Cernan, landed on the moon’s Taurus-Littrow region in the Lunar Module. 

 Driving on the Moon                                                                                                          Apollo 17 mission commander Eugene A. Cernan makes a short checkout of the Lunar Roving Vehicle during the early part of the first Apollo 17 extravehicular activity at the Taurus-Littrow landing site. This view of the lunar rover prior to loadup was taken by Harrison H. Schmitt, Lunar Module pilot.

Apollo 17 – The Last Moon Shot

In 1865, Jules Verne wrote a science fiction story entitled, “From the Earth to the Moon.” The story outlined the author’s vision of a cannon in Florida so powerful that it could shoot a “Projectile-Vehicle” carrying three adventurers to the moon. More than 100 years later NASA produced the Saturn V rocket and from a spaceport in Florida.

Reflections of the Moon                                                                                                             The surface of the moon is reflected in the command and service module as it prepares to rendezvous with the lunar module in this December 1972 image from the Apollo 17 mission.

  Training for the Apollo 17 Mission                                       Two members of the prime crew of the Apollo 17 lunar landing mission participate in training at the Kennedy Space Center. Scientist-astronaut Harrison H. Schmitt (foreground), lunar module pilot, simulates scooping up lunar sample material. Astronaut Eugene A. Cernan (background), commander, holds a sample b

 Blue Marble – Image of the Earth from Apollo 17                                           

View of the Earth as seen by the Apollo 17 crew — astronaut Eugene A. Cernan, commander; astronaut Ronald E. Evans, command module pilot; and scientist-astronaut Harrison H. Schmitt, lunar module pilot — traveling toward the moon. This translunar coast photograph extends from the Mediterranean Sea area to the Antarctica South polar ice cap.

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President Barack Obama Inauguration, January 20, 2009, Part 1

 

President Barack Obama Inauguration, January 20, 2009, Part 1

President Barack Obama Inauguration Day

On Tuesday, January 20, 2009

And

Looking Back To His Past

In 2009 I created a portrait artwork utilizing the words written by, President Barack Obama, in his 2009 Inauguration speech. In addition I developed other artwork about his family.  After I finished the project I utilized the artwork to produce a video that uses President Barack Obama’s voice delivering his inauguration speech.  My intention in doing the artwork, and video, was for future generations to see the improvement of human civilization at this moment in time.  We are progressing, and are able to accept and recognize that we are all human beings and that all of us should have the same rights and privileges.  If one of us tries with determination to attain a goal, he or she, should receive respect and a fair chance.  This allows for many possibilities, such as the election of President Barack Obama.  I hope people who view my video will feel good about the human race, remembering how far we have come, as we continue to move forward to a brighter more inclusive future.

Ing –On Vibulbhan-Watts, Monday, December 05, 2016 

I just uploaded my video on YouTube on Monday, December 5, 2016 for other people to view my video.  There are two reasons that I put my video on public view, first, this month is the last month of President Barack Obama’s presidency.  Secondly, is to remember the past, especially comparing his presidency, to the potential presidency of the next administration.

The link to YouTube is:  https://youtu.be/5T3lAhuWHPk

The Oath

The presidential oath of office, as set out in the Constitution:

I, Barack Hussein Obama, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of the President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.  “So help me God.”

Inaugural Address 

By President Barack Hussein Obama, On Tuesday, January 20, 2009  

My fellow citizens:  I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you’ve bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. 

    I thank President Bush for his service to our nation — (applause) — as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

     Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. 

The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace.  Yet, every so often, the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms.  At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we, the people, have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears and true to our founding documents.

So it has been; so it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood.  Our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred.  Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.  Homes have been lost, jobs shed, businesses shuttered.  Our health care is too costly, our schools fail too many — and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics.  Less measurable, but no less profound, is a sapping of confidence across our land; a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real.  They are serious and they are many.  They will not be met easily or in a short span of time.  But know this America:  They will be met.  (Applause.)

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.  On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics.  We remain a young nation.

But in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.  The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea passed on from generation to generation:

the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.  (Applause.)

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation we understand that greatness is never a given.  It must be earned.  Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less.  It has not been the path for the faint-hearted, for those that prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame.

Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated, but more often men and women obscure in their labor –

who have carried us up the long rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.  For us, they toiled in sweatshops, and settled the West, endured the lash of the whip, and plowed the hard earth.  For us, they fought and died in places like Concord and Gettysburg, Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life.  They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions, greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today.  We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth.  Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began.

Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week, or last month, or last year.  Our capacity remains undiminished.  But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed.  Starting today,

we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.  (Applause.)

Please Continue: President Barack Obama Inauguration, January 20, 2009, Part 2 The link is:

https://ingpeaceproject.com/2016/12/28/president-barack-obama-inauguration-january-20-2009-part-2/

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President Barack Obama Inauguration, January 20, 2009, Part 2

President Barack Obama Inauguration, January 20, 2009, Part 2

President Barack Obama Inauguration Day

On Tuesday, January 20, 2009

And

Looking Back To His Past

In 2009 I created a portrait artwork utilizing the words written by, President Barack Obama, in his 2009 Inauguration speech. In addition I developed other artwork about his family.  After I finished the project I utilized the artwork to produce a video that uses President Barack Obama’s voice delivering his inauguration speech.  My intention in doing the artwork, and video, was for future generations to see the improvement of human civilization at this moment in time.  We are progressing, and are able to accept and recognize that we are all human beings and that all of us should have the same rights and privileges.  If one of us tries with determination to attain a goal, he or she, should receive respect and a fair chance.  This allows for many possibilities, such as the election of President Barack Obama.  I hope people who view my video will feel good about the human race, remembering how far we have come, as we continue to move forward to a brighter more inclusive future.

Ing –On Vibulbhan-Watts, Monday, December 05, 2016 

I just uploaded my video on YouTube on Monday, December 5, 2016 for other people to view my video.  There are two reasons that I put my video on public view, first, this month is the last month of President Barack Obama’s presidency.  Secondly, is to remember the past, especially comparing his presidency, to the potential presidency of the next administration.

The link to YouTube is:  https://youtu.be/5T3lAhuWHPk

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done.  The state of our economy calls for action, bold and swift.  And we will act, not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.  We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.  We’ll restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost.  

We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.  And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age.  All this we can do.  All this we will do. Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions, who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans.  Their memories are short, for they have forgotten what this country has already done, what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.  What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. 

Barack Hussein Obama Jr. was born on August 4, 1961, Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S.A.

Mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, from Wichita, Kansas, U.S.A., English and Irish descent           Born 1942     Died 1995

Education; Occidental College, Los Angeles for two years and transferred to Columbia University, New York City, graduated with a B.A. in 1983, majored in political science

Father; Barack Obama, Sr., a Luo from Nyang o’ma, Kogelo, Nyanza Province, Kenya.  Parents met in 1960 while attending the University of Hawaii at Manoa, married on February 2, 1961and divorced in 1964.

Barack Obama, Jr., met his father when he was about ten years old in 1971.  His father was born in 1936 and died in 1982.

Education; Graduated with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from Harvard Law School in 1991

Healthy baby Barack Obama Jr., in Honolulu, Hawaii

Grandfather, Stanley A. Dunham Born 1918, Died 1992

Grandmother, Madelyn L. Payne Born 1922, Died 2008 (just before Barack Obama become the newly elected president)

The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.  Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward.  Where the answer is no, programs will end.  And those of us who manage the public’s dollars will be held to account, to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day, because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill.  Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched.  But this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control.  The nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous.  The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity, on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.  (Applause.)

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.  Our Founding Fathers — (applause) — our Founding Fathers, faced with perils that we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man — a charter expanded by the blood of generations.  Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience sake.  (Applause.)

And so, to all the other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born, know that America is a friend of each nation, and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity.  And we are ready to lead once more.  (Applause.) Barack Obama visited his father’s family in Kenya, for the first time in 1987.

Barack Obama visited his father’s family in Kenya, for the first time in 1987.

Barack Obama with his uncle, named Said.

Barack Obama’s half brother, Malik Abongo Obama who was born in 1958, and his ex-girlfriend, Amy

Barack Obama’s two half brothers, Abo Obama was born in 1968 (left) and Bernard Obama was born in1970 (right)

Barack Obama’s early education Punahou School, Honolulu, Hawaii from fifth grade in 1971 until graduation from high school on 1979 (and lived with his grandparents during this time)

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with the sturdy alliances and enduring convictions.  They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please.  Instead they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy.  Guided by these principles once more we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort, even greater cooperation and understanding between nations.  We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan.  With old friends and former foes, we’ll work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet.

Barack Obama’s half sister Auma Obama was born in 1960 and her mother Kezia, Barack senior’s first wife was born in1930.

Barack Obama’s step-grandmother Sarah Ogwel (left) and aunt Jane (right).

Barack Obama’s step-grandmother, Sarah Ogwel is his grandfather, Hussein O. Obama third wife, his grandfather was born in 1895, died in 1979.

Barack Obama poses with his step-grandmother, Sarah Ogwel Obama in 1992.

We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense.  And for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken — you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.  (Applause.)

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness.  We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers.  We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West, know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.  (Applause.)

To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.  (Applause.) Barack Obama’s step-father Lolo Soetoro was born in 1936, and died in 1987.  The family moved to Indonesia in 1967, where his step-father came from.

Barack Obama’s half sister, Maya Soetoro was born in 1970.  Barack Obama attended Besuki Public School and St. Francis of Assisi School in Jakarta, Indonesia, until he was ten years old.

Barack Obama married Michelle LaVaughn Robinson in 1992.  Michelle was born in 1964.  They have two daughters, Malia Ann Obama was born in 1998 and Sasha Obama was born in 2001.

Barack Obama’s father-in-law, Fraser Robinson, mother-in-law, Marian Robinson, brother-in-law, Craig Robinson and baby Michelle Robinson in 1964

Barack Obama’s family trip to Niagara Falls with half sister, Maya (center) and her husband, Konard Ng (right in 2003)

Barack Obama taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School for twelve years from 1992 to 2004

After graduating from Columbia University Barack Obama worked for a year at the Business International Corporation and then at Public Interest Research Group.

In Chicago Barack Obama worked as a community organizer for three years from June 1985 to May 1988.

Barack Obama was elected to the Illinois State Senate in 1996 where he served three terms from1997 to 2004.

Barack Obama was elected as a United States Senator from Illinois’ 13th District and sworn in January 4, 2005.  He resigned on November 16, 2008.

Barack Obama became the forty fourth United States President, sworn in on January 20, 2009.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds.  And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders, nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect.  For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the role that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who at this very hour patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains.  They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages.

We honor them not only because they are the guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service — a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves.

And yet at this moment, a moment that will define a generation, it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.  For as much as government can do, and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies.  It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours.  It is the firefighter’s courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent’s willingness to nurture a child that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new.  The instruments with which we meet them may be new.  But those values upon which our success depends — honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old.  These things are true.  They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history.

What is demanded, then, is a return to these truths.  What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition on the part of every American that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world; duties that we do not grudgingly accept, but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.  This is the source of our confidence —

the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed, why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall;

and why a man whose father less than 60 years ago might not have been served in a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.  (Applause.)

So let us mark this day with remembrance of who we are and how far we have traveled.  In the year of America’s birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river.  The capital was abandoned.  The enemy was advancing.  The snow was stained with blood.  At the moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words to be read to the people:

“Let it be told to the future world…that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive… that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].”

America:  In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words.  With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come.  Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God’s grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Thank you.  God bless you.  And God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)

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