Saturday, July 10, 1999 Published at 13:39 GMT 14:39 UK
Full text: Nixon's unused Apollo speech
In the event Nixon personally welcomed the astronauts back home
Recently discovered documents detail the steps Nasa and the Nixon administration would have taken had the Apollo XI astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin been unable to return from the moon.
The following is the full text of the unused speech, ominously entitled "In the event of moon disaster", which President Nixon would have given as the astronauts lived out their final hours:
These brave men, Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin, know that there is no hope for their recovery. But they also know that there is hope for mankind in their sacrifice.
These two men are laying down their lives in mankind's most noble goal: the search for truth and understanding.
They will be mourned by their families and friends; they will be mourned by their nation; they will be mourned by the people of the world; they will be mourned by a Mother Earth that dared send two of her sons into the unknown.
In ancient days, men looked at stars and saw their heroes in the constellations.
In modern times, we do much the same, but our heroes are epic men of flesh and blood.
Others will follow, and surely find their way home. Man's search will not be denied.
But these men were the first, and they will remain the foremost in our hearts.
For every human being who looks up at the moon in the nights to come will know that there is some corner of another world that is forever mankind.