Buzz Aldrin featured speaker at Sept. 18 Salvation Army luncheon
By Susan Johnson
The Salvation Army will have an “out-of-this-world” guest at their Annual Civic Luncheon. Buzz Aldrin, the last survivor of the astronauts who walked on the moon in Apollo 11, will be the featured speaker at the luncheon, to be held from 11:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 18, at Cliffbreakers Riverside Resort, 700 W. Riverside Blvd., Rockford.
The Rock River Times spoke with Tara Blazer, director of development for the Salvation Army, and asked her how they happened to select him as the guest for this year’s luncheon.
“We just wanted to bring a wider attention to the work of the Salvation Army, and we’re getting more names that people would recognize in the community,” said Blazer. “For example, last year is when we first started this higher level of visibility with our speakers. Last year, we had Capt. Scott O’Grady, who was a U.S. fighter pilot who was shot down over Bosnia in the mid-1990s. The movie Behind Enemy Lines was based on his life when he was shot down. His transponder wasn’t working to let the United States know where he was. He had to survive for one week on his own; the Bosnians knew exactly where he was; they saw where he had landed.
“This year, we decided to bring somebody else that we thought would be of great interest to Rockford, and now, sadly, with Neil Armstrong dying, he [Buzz Aldrin] is the only remaining astronaut of the two,” Blazer said. “He probably won’t be coming through Rockford again in his lifetime. We just thought he would be an inspirational speaker, and a lot of people would be interested in him, and so we decided to bring him here.”
Cost of the luncheon is $35 per person. Make your reservations now at (815) 972-1133.
From the Sept. 12-18, 2012, issue
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