Volume 03, Issue 3
This month marks the anniversary of two milestones of historic programs
at Boeing and its
William Allen, who served as the president of Boeing from 1945 to 1968, was known as a thoughtful, conservative businessman and certainly not one to take a foolish risk.
Yet it was Allen who, with the approval of the company's Board of Directors, in 1952 decided to commit $16 million of the company's money to building a prototype airplane. That amount represented nearly all the profit the company had made since the end of World War II, and it was earmarked for an airplane that did not have interest from airlines or contracts from the government.
An estimated 600 million people-one fifth of the world's population-watched as U.S. astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong took their first steps on the moon on July 20, 1969. Evidence of this historic occasion remains imprinted on the moon's powdery surface.
The successful completion of the mission was a defining moment in American history, as well as in the history of The Boeing Company. Many of the major components used on the Apollo 11 mission-from the giant Saturn V rocket to the Surveyor 1 lunar spacecraft-were developed and built by companies that would later join Boeing.
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