It is a sad fact that the first man to walk on the moon was 1969 and the last was in 1972 and we haven't been back since.
Edgar Mitchell was the 6th man on the moon and his death means that of the 12 humans who have set foot on another solar body, five have died and the remainder are all in the eighties so there could soon not be anybody alive who has walked on anything but the Earth.
Unfortunately, once the moon was landed upon the space program cooled and the next giant step of a moon base or man on Mars, never materialised and due to financial constraints, is unlikely to be revived in our lifetime.
'There are not compelling publicly-held reasons for doing it' a NASA spokesman explained, 'Without a rationale that everybody understands and can buy into, it's a very hard sell to get the resources to do it'.
The question, 40 years later, seems to have become less 'when are we going back' and more 'why should we go back'.
There is no shortage of people suggesting we have better things to spend our money on here on Earth but exploring is what us humans do we, we go looking for places to investigate and attempt to establish a foothold.
How can anyone look up at the night sky, see the beautiful moon and stars and wonder are we alone, what else is there in the inky blackness of space and if we have the technology and know how to do it, why are we not doing more to add to the very limited knowledge we have about our nearest neighbour.