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See the forgotten NASA Apollo 11 crew photo found at the bottom of a box

Command module pilot Michael Collins rediscovered an old picture of the history-making astronauts.

apollo11crewcollins

Michael Collins found this photo in a box.

NASA
This story is part of To the Moon, a series exploring humanity's first journey to the lunar surface and our future living and working on the moon.

It's customary for NASA astronauts to snap a few glamour photos ahead of a big mission, and it didn't get much bigger than 1969's Apollo 11 mission to land humans on the moon. Command module pilot Michael Collins rediscovered an old photo of his famous crew and shared it on Twitter on Thursday.

"The crew. Found this at the bottom of a box. Don't think it was ever used by NASA," Collins wrote. This exact photo doesn't seem to appear on the NASA website, but you can find other poses from the same shoot.

The photo shows Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin off to one side and Collins with his arm casually reaching over a large mock-up of the moon. Collins' signature runs across the top. 

The timing for the photo's reemergence is perfect as we head toward the 50th anniversary of the moon landing in July. 

Collins has been very active on Twitter, recently saying he wouldn't return to the moon if given the chance because he's instead heading for Mars. It shows his enthusiasm for space hasn't waned in the decades since he traveled to the moon.