Space boy abuzz after chance encounter - Republic-Times | News

Space boy abuzz after chance encounter

By on November 22, 2017 at 10:45 am

Pictured is young Lukas Pilkey with legendary former astronaut Buzz Aldrin following his speech at Saint Louis University last Wednesday. (submitted photo)

The 6-year-old son of a Waterloo native had the experience of a lifetime last week when he got to meet a legendary former astronaut.

Buzz Aldrin spoke to a full house at Saint Louis University’s Center for Global Citizenship last Wednesday as part of SLU’s Great Issues Speakers Series. As the Lunar Module Pilot on Apollo 11, Aldrin was one of the first two humans to land on the Moon, and the second person to walk on it.

Fascinated with space exploration, Lukas Pilkey, 6, the son of 1996 Waterloo High School graduate Aerica (Dreps) Pilkey of Shiloh, stood in line with his parents outside of SLU dressed as an astronaut in hopes of getting a seat to Aldrin’s speech. 

Once inside the venue, event organizers noticed Lukas’ astronaut suit and gave him a special backstage pass to meet Aldrin.

“Lukas told him, ‘I’m gonna be the second person that goes to Mars, just for you, Buzz,'” Aerica told the Republic-Times. “Buzz told my son, ‘Keep studying hard in math and science, because you’re our future, buddy…>>>

Read the rest of this story in the November 22  issue of the Republic-Times.

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Corey Saathoff

Corey is the editor of the Republic-Times. He has worked at the newspaper since 2004, and currently resides in Columbia. He is also the principal singer-songwriter and plays guitar in St. Louis area country-rock band The Trophy Mules.