Congressman Wants Center Renamed For First Man On The Moon
A California congressman says it's time for NASA to honor Apollo
11 astronaut, and noted test pilot, Neil Armstrong... by renaming
its Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards AFB after him.
The Los Angeles Daily News reports Rep. Ken Calvert is preparing
legislation to rename the center after Armstrong (shown above), who
in 1969 became the first human to walk on the moon.
"He's certainly an American hero, a world hero for that matter,
and this is the type of recognition he deserves," Calvert said,
adding his proposal would still honor aerodynamics expert Hugh
Dryden... by naming a test range after him.
The legislation reportedly has the backing of several space
advocates, as well as others in the Antelope Valley surrounding
California Space Authority Deputy Director Janice Dunn believes
renaming Dryden would better reflect the center's increasingly
"It'll help reflect that the center does indeed have an active
participation in space exploration," said Dunn. "It's kind of lost
that the center has a space exploration connection."
There is also the subject of name recognition, as nearly
everyone recognizes the name Neil Armstrong. Far fewer people know
that Hugh Dryden was an aerodynamics expert who headed the National
Advisory Committee on Aeronautics -- forerunner to NASA -- and
later served as the new agency's deputy administrator.
Dryden also helped launch the X-15 rocketplane program, before
passing away in 1956.
Calvert, the ranking Republican member of the House Space and
Aeronautics subcommittee, says under his plan the Western
Aeronautical Test Range would be renamed for Dryden. The range
provides radar and GPS coverage for the restricted airspace over
and to the north of Edwards.
When informed of the proposal by Calvert, Armstrong told the
congressman he would not take a position on the matter.