WATCH: Apollo 11 astronaut returns to launch pad 50 years later

Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins returned Tuesday to the exact spot where he and two other astronauts flew to the moon 50 years ago.

At NASA’s invitation, Michael Collins spent the golden anniversary at Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Complex 39A in Florida. He marked the precise moment — 9:32 a.m. on July 16, 1969 — that their Saturn V rocket departed on humanity’s first moon landing. Buzz Aldrin was an unexplained no-show. Mission commander Neil Armstrong — who took the first lunar footsteps — died in 2012.

Collins said he wished Aldrin and Armstrong could have shared the moment at the pad.

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