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Neil Armstrong remembered nationwide as a hero for mankind

Neil Armstrong was remembered by President Obama and leaders throughout the country as not only an inspiration for the nation, but a hero for all of mankind.

“Neil was among the greatest of American heroes -- not just of his time, but of all time,” Obama said in a statement. “When he and his fellow crew members lifted off aboard Apollo 11 in 1969, they carried with them the aspirations of an entire nation.… And when Neil stepped foot on the surface of the moon for the first time, he delivered a moment of human achievement that will never be forgotten.”

Republican challenger Mitt Romney said he met and spoke with Armstrong just a few weeks ago.

PHOTOS: Neil Armstrong dead at 82

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“With courage unmeasured and unbounded love for his country, he walked where man had never walked before,” Romney said in a statement. “His passion for space, science and discovery, and his devotion to America, will inspire me through my lifetime.”

In a statement, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said Armstrong would always be “remembered for taking humankind’s first small step on a world beyond our own.”

“Besides being one of America’s greatest explorers, Neil carried himself with a grace and humility that was an example to us all,” he said.

PHOTOS: Apollo 11 mission

The legendary astronaut was honored in November along with astronauts John Glenn, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins with the Congressional Gold Medal, the nation’s highest civilian honor. House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and other congressional leaders feted the space explorers in a ceremony in the Capitol.

Boehner, who represents Armstrong’s home state, remembered the astronaut as “a true hero.”

“Neil Armstrong blazed trails not just for America, but for all of mankind,” he said in a statement. “Ohio has lost one of her proudest sons. Humanity has gained a legend.”

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paloma.esquivel@latimes.com

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