Astronaut John Young Dead

Astronaut John Young Dead

Astronaut John Young Dead

Young died Friday night following complications from pneumonia, the US space agency said in a statement.

He was also the first to make six spacewalks and, at one point, held the record for longest time spent in space, according to NASA. "Astronaut John Young's storied career spanned three generations of spaceflight; we will stand on his shoulders as we look toward the next human frontier", NASA Administrator Robert Lightfoot said.

We mourn the passing of astronaut John Young, who began his career with us in 1962, when he was selected from hundreds of young pilots for our second astronaut class.

Young was only one of three astronauts to fly to the moon twice, having set foot on the moon during the Apollo 16 mission on April 27, 1972.

In March 1965, he made his first flight as an astronaut, joining Gus Grissom on Gemini 3, the first manned flight of that program.

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Astronaut Terry Virts tweeted: "Rest In peace John Young". "If anybody deserves the title of legend it would be John Young", Andrew Chaikin, who has written extensively on NASA, told NPR. "He was in every way the 'astronaut's astronaut'".

Young was born in San Francisco and grew up in Orlando. He went on to study aeronautical engineering at Georgia Tech, where he graduated with highest honors in 1952.

In 1969, Young was the commander of the Apollo 10 flight to the Moon, a preparation flight for the eventual Apollo 11 Moon landing several months later.

He joined the Navy, serving on a destroyer before becoming a pilot in 1959.

In 1981, meanwhile, he commanded the first space shuttle flight. He retired in 2004. It was the first time a piloted spacecraft was tested in space without previous orbital flights with nobody on board.

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