- No kidding, quite literally. Man. In. The. Moon.
You’ve probably thought the man in the moon was fake, right? Well, technically…
Planetary Science Pioneer, Eugene Shoemaker
Eugene Merle Shoemaker is often credited with the invention of the field of planetary science. Or, maybe you’ve heard of the comet that hit the planet Jupiter, and the impact made national news. He discovered Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 with his wife, Carolyn S. Shoemaker and David H. Levy, a Canadian astronomer.
Shoemaker Trained As A Geologist
Trained as a geologist, Mr. Shoemaker melded his discipline with astronomy. He used the great space race to study the surfaces of moons, planets, and comets. He trained the astronauts headed to the Moon, he even sat next to Walter Cronkite on-air, as NASA’s spokesperson.
What Does This Have To Do With The Man In The Moon?
Mr. Shoemaker spent much of his later life trekking across the globe, finding impact craters that had gone unnoticed. Tragically, one of these trips ended in a car crash, which killed Mr. Shoemaker. Mr. Shoemaker was cremated. His wife had his ashes sealed in a metal cylinder, and he was sent to the Moon.
Mrs. Shoemaker Had The Urn Engraved
She made many discoveries alongside Mr. Shoemaker, and had the metal engraved with a quote from Romeo and Juliet:
And, when he shall die
Take him and cut him out in little stars
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.
Mr. Shoemaker Is The Only One Buried On The Moon
Inspired by Sci-Fi shows like Star Trek, many companies have offered space burials. Most of these capsules only made it to lower orbit. The ashes eventually ended up in the atmosphere and burned up. So, Mr. Shoemaker is the only “man in the moon,” for now.
Mr. Shoemaker Won’t Be The Only One For Long
Elysium Space wants to send people’s ashes to the Moon, so that they’ll stay in space. The asking price is $10,000 dollars, which matches the average cost of the average funeral in the United States.