To date, only 24 humans have traveled to the moon. Three of which have made the trek twice, with a local hero being the first to do so. Capt. James A. Lovell, Jr. has made his mark on our universe, flying into space four times.
“We were so curious, so excited about being at the Moon that we were like three school kids looking into a candy store window, watching those ancient old craters go by…” — James Lovell and Ron Stone, Apollo 8
Currently living in Lake Forest, Lovell is a close friend and contributor to the Adler Planetarium, whom honored him at this year’s Celestial Ball.
The Ball is the Adler Planetarium’s biggest fundraising event. The 2018 gala marked a milestone for the institution, raising over $2 million in support of its mission: to inspire exploration and understanding of our universe, specifically through the planetarium’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education programs.
Held by the Women’s Board, the gala hosted a sellout crowd of over 700 of Chicago’s business, civic, and philanthropic leaders who enjoyed an evening of dinner, drinks, and dancing under Adler’s stars.
The Sept. 8 event celebrated Capt. James Lovell, who was presented a Lifetime Achievement Award. As a former NASA astronaut, Naval Aviator, and retired Naval captain, Lovell has dedicated his life to space exploration. He is famously known for being the commander of the Apollo 13 mission, as well as the command module pilot of Apollo 8, the first Apollo mission to enter lunar orbit.
Preceding the Gala, Adler launched a campaign honoring Lovell, a lifetime trustee, in celebration of turning 90 years young. The Letters to Lovell campaign collected personal notes for the captain and his family recounting memories and words of admiration of how he has inspired others to reach their dreams. Letters came from all over the world. One note arrived from an 8-year-old who claims to be Lovell’s biggest fan. Hudson Lindich was the one to present his hero with the Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s Celestial Ball.
Lisa H. Bertagna and Mihra Seta were this year’s event co-chairs, along with the dinner chairs: Pradip K. Patiath and James J. O’Connor Jr.
The Adler recognized Magellan Corporation as the 2018 Corporate Partner Award honoree.
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Emily Stone is Associate Editor at Make It Better. She earned a degree in journalism from Elon University in North Carolina. Along with writing, Stone has a passion for digital storytelling and photography. Her work is published in Chicago Athlete Magazine. Stone is a supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Stone is a fluent Spanish speaker who in her free time loves a good dance class.