Thank god it never had to be said.
Read the Speech Nixon Would Have Read To America If Apollo 11 Failed
The late President Richard Nixon had a speech written for the worst-case scenario 50 years ago when Apollo 11 prepared to walk on the moon.
“‘You’re working on this moon-shot. You’ll want to consider a, uh, alternative posture for the president in the event of mishaps,'” Safire recalled being asked by astronaut liaison Frank Borman.
Safire said he didn’t understand the request at first until Borman added, “‘What to do for the widows.'”
The surface of the moon was an unknown factor, and the White House prepared for disasters that may have resulted in the deaths of commander Neil Armstrong, command module captain Michael Collins or lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin.