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Before the ticker tape parades and the inevitable world tour, the triumphant Apollo 11 astronauts were greeted with a more mundane aspect of life on Earth when they splashed down 40 years ago today - going through customs.
Just what did Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins have to declare? Moon rocks, moon dust and other lunar samples, according to the customs form filed at the Honolulu Airport in Hawaii on July 24, 1969
It's more humor than fact because Apollo 11 splashed down 920 miles (1,480 km) southwest of Hawaii and 13 miles (21 km) from the USS Hornet, a Navy ship sent to recover the crew. It took a two more days for the astronauts to actually return to Hawaii on July 26, where they were welcomed with a July 27 ceremony at Pearl Harbor.
The catch? The astronauts were trapped inside a NASA trailer as part of a quarantine effort just in case they brought back any germs or disease from the moon. They even wore special biological containment suits when they walked out on the deck of the USS Hornet after being retrieved.