Apollo 15 Command Module Pilot Col Al Worden opens US Pavilion with presentation of lunar mission flag to mark RAF centenary

Apollo 15 Command Module Pilot, Col Al Worden, USAF-Retired, has presented a flag flown on his lunar mission to Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier, RAF Chief of the Air Staff, to mark the RAF’s centenary and to officially open the US Pavilion.

Worden joined US government, military, other officials and industry supporters, including Robert “Woody” Johnson, the US ambassador to the UK, at the presentation on day one.

The opening ceremony recognised the 300 US companies exhibiting at Farnborough this year, more than 250 of them in the new USA Partnership Pavilion, which covers a total of 4,000 square metres in Halls 2, 3 and 4.

Pavilion exhibitors represent 30 states, including 20 state pavilions. Nearly 50 of the pavilion exhibitors are new to the market and 90 are new to the show.

Col Worden ‘comes home’ to Farnborough

Col Worden said he is a staunch advocate for science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education. His visit to Farnborough, in conjunction with the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT), was a great opportunity to inspire young people with his stories of his moon landing.

During presentations to Kemble Primary School, Fairford Primary School, and the Ogden Trust, Worden said he plans to excite and encourage students to pursue engineering careers.

His programme will feature highlights of his 1971 mission to the moon, followed by question-and-answer sessions with students and teachers. His visit with the Ogden Trust will include parents, with the aim of raising science capital within the local community.

Worden is no stranger to Farnborough. Prior to his life as an astronaut, he served as an instructor at the Aerospace Research Pilots School at Edwards Air Force Base, California from which he graduated in September 1965. He is also a December 1964 graduate of the Empire Test Pilots School in Farnborough, so in effect, Worden has come home.