Mission Apollo Minute: Pete Conrad’s Moonwalking Suit

Charles “Pete” Conrad became the third person to walk on the Moon as part of Apollo 12.  Conrad commanded the mission and stepped onto the lunar surface Nov. 19, 1969.

His first words were slightly less majestic than Neil Armstrong’s, but reflected Conrad’s fun and sunny disposition. “Whoopee! Man, that may have been a small one for Neil, but that’s a long one for me,” Conrad, who is 5-foot-6, said as he stepped off the lunar lander. Armstrong was five inches taller than Conrad.

In Andrew Chaikin’s 1994 book, A Man on the Moon, Conrad admitted that his words were planned as part of a bet with reporter Oriana Fallaci. 

Conrad made the most of his time on the lunar surface, walking to the Surveyor 3 probe and removing pieces of it to return to Earth. He and Alan Bean spent nearly eight hours on the Moon’s surface before returning to Earth on Nov. 24.

The spacesuit Conrad wore on the Moon is on display at Space Center Houston inside Astronaut Gallery. This is one of only two spacesuits worn on the Moon on display outside the Smithsonian Institution. If you look closely, you can see the Moon dust.

In our latest Mission Apollo Minute video, explore Conrad’s suit and the Apollo 12 mission with images from the center and the mission itself.

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