It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you'll do things differently.
The space race in the United States accelerated in 1961 when on May 25 President John F. Kennedy stood before Congress and said, “This nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before the decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to the earth.” This was in response to the threat of Soviet dominance in space. History was made on July 20, 1969, when Apollo 11 landed on the moon and Neil Armstrong's boot touched the lunar surface. It was thrilling. It was extraordinarily memorable.
In the history of space exploration, there is another perhaps equally well-known event: Apollo 13. In 1970 Apollo 13 was on its way to the moon when it encountered a high-risk incident, an explosion aboard the spacecraft, forcing the cancellation of the plan to again land on the moon and prompting a return to Earth. There were no guarantees the crippled ship would get the crew back home alive. But thanks to the mission control team at NASA and the grit of the Apollo 13 astronauts, Apollo was a successful failure—the mission of going to the moon failed, but they made it back and no one was killed. Mission control was confronted with an extraordinary, complex predicament. This was not something anyone expected. They didn't plan for it. There wasn't a Plan B. Nothing in the brief ...