January 20, 1930 – American astronaut Buzz Aldrin is born

Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, was bornn January 20, 1930. He was the Lunar Module Pilot on Apollo 11, the first lunar landing.

Wikipedia says:

“Aldrin was selected as part of the third group of NASA astronauts in October 1963. After the deaths of the original Gemini 9 prime crew, Elliott See and Charles Bassett, Aldrin was promoted to back-up crew for the mission. The main objective of the revised mission (Gemini 9A) was to rendezvous and dock with a target vehicle but when this failed Aldrin improvised an effective exercise for the craft to rendezvous with a co-ordinate in space. He was confirmed as pilot on Gemini 12, the last Gemini mission and the last chance to prove methods for EVA. He utilized revolutionary techniques during training for that mission, including neutrally-buoyant underwater training. Such techniques are still used today. Aldrin set a record for extra-vehicular activity and proved that astronauts could work outside the spacecraft. It was because of this that Deke Slayton credited Aldrin with ‘saving the space program’.”

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~ by tellinghistory on January 20, 2007.

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