December 24, 1968

“I frankly think that Apollo 8 will be remembered more by the Earthrise picture a hundred years from now. .. I think it’s ironic that we went all the way to the Moon, and to explore the Moon, what we really discovered was the Earth.”
—Astronaut Bill Anders, who took this photo. Apollo 8 was his only spaceflight.

Looking back on the mission, his crewmate Frank Lovell said: “We often talk of going to heaven when we die. But in reality, don’t we go to heaven when we’re born? Because don’t we arrive on a body that has the proper mass that can contain water and an atmosphere? The very essentials of life? And don’t we arrive on a body that’s just at the right distance from a star that provides the energy, the energy to the Earth? And that energy is what caused life to evolve in the beginning.”


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