|Apollo 14 astronaut Alan Shepard has just finished deploying our flag on the stark lunar surface. The flag is hanging much like a curtain from the small metal rod that Alan folded up and looked into place at the tip of the pole. If this rod were not used, the flag would always hang down limp around the pole as there is no wind on the Moon.
We see some of Alan Shepard and Ed Mitchell's footprints in the gray soil. There is typically an inch or so of loose dirt at the surface with more packed dirt extending down several feet. Scientists say, these footprints will remain as they are for 40 million years because there just isn't much to disturb them in the airless, waterless environment of the Moon.
Down through history, man has proudly planted the flag of his country when exploring new lands. The same feelings of love of country, of the honor of being the one who could set it in place, of being part of a continuing colorful tradition are just as present a quarter of a million miles from home. Apollo, the quest for the Moon, was an impossible dream that we all, working together, made come true. It will be remembered through history as the greatest legacy of our time. Though the Stars and Stripes are wrinkling from the long journey through space, it stands to this day. The flag of the United States of America is the only flag on the Moon.