NRL News

Reflections on Earth Day

by | Apr 22, 2014


By Dave Andrusko

If there is such as thing as a reverse spoiler alert, this may qualify. In this brief post, you will figure out where I am headed long before I get there. Having said that….

Today, as almost everyone knows, is Earth Day, first celebrated in 1970. The photo you see below (taken today) comes from NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, bless their hearts. Here’s an overview of a series of photos that AOL has posted:


“Above, take a look through some of the splendid photos of Mother Earth that have been shot from outer space through the years. From the original Blue Marble photo shot back in 1972 to the new high-definition Blue Marble images to a screen shot of the very first video image of Earth taken by a weather satellite in 1960, the photos are breathtaking on any day, but take on a special meaning on Earth Day.”

(You can see them all at

The first television image of the Earth from space taken on April 1, 1960. (Image by NASA)

The first television image of the Earth from space taken on April 1, 1960. (Image by NASA)

If you put that first black and white televised image of earth taken from the satellite and put it alongside the extremely high definition image that was taken today, the early photos is almost primitive.

But if the improvement of images of “Mother Earth” is remarkable, it is even more so for images taken of every pregnant Mom’s “passenger.” Once upon a time, almost invisible, pictures of unborn children are everywhere, including on our refrigerators, in albums, and everywhere in advertisements

Our four children are now all adults. In the 1980s and early 1990s, I had to pretend I could make out what I saw on the ultrasound. Thankfully, the techs were kind enough to point out that “this” was a hand and “this” was the heart. (I had trouble making out the head!)

Not anymore. Talk about a marriage of technologies, my daughter in law sent me the first ultrasounds of our two grandkids by text!

Like hundreds of millions of [grand]parents around the world, when we went to the obstetrician we could see our grandkids in four-color “real time,” meaning you could see them running all over the place. The facial features were distinct, not blurs, and no one had to help me figure out (literally) heads from tails.

Earth Day reminds us to celebrate and appreciate the beauty of Planet Earth. But everyday—365 days a year—we should celebrate the unborn child’s incredible beauty.

Celebrate and appreciate and be in awe of the Miracle of Life.

Categories: Unborn Children