Woman Sues NASA Over Ownership Of Moon Dust
A woman, Laura Cicco, from Cincinnati, US, is suing NASA to make sure that the agency doesn’t take back a piece of the moon. Astronaut Neil Armstrong had gifted her the piece. She is now trying to affirm her ownership of a vial of moon dust that she has.
Laura might be one of the very few citizens who own a piece of the moon. To affirm her ownership so that she can call it her own, she’s suing Nasa and making sure it doesn’t try to take the moon dust from her.
Laura filed a lawsuit in a federal court in Kansas last week. In her lawsuit, she said she was 10 when her mother gave her a note and a small vial of dust. In her lawsuit, she has stated that that astronaut Neil Armstrong, commander of the Apollo 11 mission, and the first man on the moon, had given this to her through her mother.
Along with the vial of dust, he had sent an accompanying hand-written note, “To Laura Ann Murray – Best of Luck – Neil Armstrong Apollo 11.”
The US astronaut reportedly gave the vial to Laura sometime in the ‘70s.
The lawsuit claims, “Astronaut Neil Armstrong gifted the vial of lunar dust to Laura Ann Murray, now Laura Murray Cicco, when she was a child, and she is the rightful and legal owner of the vial and its contents.”
Armstrong was reportedly friends with Laura’s father, late US Army Air Corps pilot Tom Murray. They used to spend a lot of time together. According to the lawsuit, they were friends during the time when they both lived in Cincinnati.
Laura found the vial five years ago after her parents passed away. She was going through her late parents’ possessions where she found it. And now she’s determined to keep it with herself.
“I came running where my husband was and I said, ‘This is the vial of moon dust. I have it,’” Laura said.
Fearing NASA may try to seize it, she is now taking steps to make sure it stays in her possession. Her lawyer says she is filing proactively because NASA has a history of seizing lunar material. However, until now NASA hasn’t tried to claim ownership.
Laura’s lawyer, Christopher McHugh, said, “Laura was rightfully given this stuff by Neil Armstrong, so it’s hers and we just want to establish that legally.”
He also said, “There’s no law prohibiting private citizens from owning materials from the moon and Cicco is the rightful and legal owner of the moon dust.”
The note from Armstrong is reliable, considering the court documents. Also, experts have already confirmed that Neil Armstrong’s note to Laura is an authentic signature by the late astronaut. A NASA spokesperson said it would be “inappropriate” for the space agency to comment.
Picture Credit: quora.com
Deepali Is An Intern With SheThePeople.TV