Reach for your Dreams
A Tribute to Apollo 15 Astronaut Colonel James Irwin who died in August 1991.
As I look at some of the stamps issued to commemorate the historic Apollo 15 flight I am reminded of this very special man who in his own unique way helped me to see my hobby in a different light.
On 10th January 1990 it was my privilege to welcome Colonel James Irwin to my home, having invited him to come to our area to talk about his Apollo flight and his Faith. But it wasn’t just taking him into schools and hearing him talk about his mission, or even listening as he personally narrated a film of the flight before an auditorium of people that made much an impression with me.
The memories that stay with me are of those moments when he sat and chatted as part of the family. The way he picked up my little boy and sat him upon his flight-suited knee, and the time he spent looking through my various space collections, talking through the various aspects of them with me.
So often when Stamp collectors or Space enthusiasts get together their focus is entirely on their collections, or the astronauts or cosmonauts that they’ve spoken to, making the newcomer to the hobby feel very inadequate, or their collection appear very inferior. My day with Colonel Irwin taught me to reach outside that, because a man that had walked on the moon was interested in me, interested in my family, in my collections, and wanted to encourage me to ‘reach for my dreams’.
I needed that, I believe our hobby needs that, and for that I shall be eternally grateful to the man who signed off his letter to my family ‘you’re very grateful brother from the moon’.