57 Facts About Buzz Aldrin

1. Buzz Aldrin made three spacewalks as pilot of the 1966 Gemini 12 mission.

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2. Buzz Aldrin was commissioned into the United States Air Force, and served as a jet fighter pilot during the Korean War.

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3. Buzz Aldrin flew 66 combat missions and shot down two MiG-15 aircraft.

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4. Buzz Aldrin retired from the Air Force in 1972, after 21 years of service.

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5. Buzz Aldrin continues to advocate for space exploration, particularly a human mission to Mars, and developed the Buzz Aldrin cycler, a special spacecraft trajectory that makes travel to Mars more efficient in terms of time and propellant.

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6. Buzz Aldrin was a Boy Scout, achieving the rank of Tenderfoot Scout.

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7. Buzz Aldrin played football and was the starting center for Montclair High School's undefeated 1946 state champion team.

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8. Buzz Aldrin attended Severn School in 1946, but had other ideas about his future career.

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9. Buzz Aldrin suffered from seasickness and considered ships a distraction from flying airplanes.

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10. Buzz Aldrin faced down his father and told him to ask Hawkes to change the nomination to the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York.

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11. Buzz Aldrin was an excellent athlete, competing in pole vault for the academy track and field team.

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12. On June 5, 1951, Buzz Aldrin graduated third in the class of 1951 with a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering.

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13. Buzz Aldrin chose the United States Air Force, which had become a separate service in 1947 while Aldrin was still at West Point and did not yet have its own academy.

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14. Buzz Aldrin recovered in time to pull out at 200 feet, averting what would have been a fatal crash.

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15. When Buzz Aldrin was deciding what sort of aircraft he should fly, his father advised him to choose bombers, because command of a bomber crew gave an opportunity to learn and hone leadership skills, which could open up better prospects for career advancement.

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16. Buzz Aldrin moved to Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas, where he learned to fly the F-80 Shooting Star and the F-86 Sabre.

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17. In December 1952, Buzz Aldrin was assigned to the 16th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron, which was part of the 51st Fighter-Interceptor Wing.

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18. Buzz Aldrin was flying about 5 miles south of the Yalu River, when he saw two MiG-15 fighters below him.

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19. Buzz Aldrin was first to do so, but his gun sight jammed.

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20. Buzz Aldrin saw the MiG's canopy open and the pilot eject, although Buzz Aldrin was uncertain whether there was sufficient time for a parachute to open.

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21. Buzz Aldrin was assigned as an aerial gunnery instructor at Nellis.

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22. Buzz Aldrin enjoyed the classwork and soon decided to pursue a doctorate instead.

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23. Buzz Aldrin was then posted to the Space Systems Division's field office at NASA's Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, where he was involved in integrating Department of Defense experiments into Project Gemini flights.

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24. Jim Lovell and Buzz Aldrin were selected as the backup crew of Gemini 10, commander and pilot respectively.

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25. Buzz Aldrin climbed across the newly installed hand-holds to the Agena and installed the cable needed for the gravity-gradient stabilization experiment.

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26. Buzz Aldrin performed numerous tasks, including installing electrical connectors and testing tools that would be needed for Project Apollo.

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27. Lovell and Buzz Aldrin were assigned to an Apollo crew with Neil Armstrong as Commander, Lovell as Command Module Pilot, and Buzz Aldrin as Lunar Module Pilot (LMP).

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28. Collins has commented that he thought Buzz Aldrin "resents not being first on the Moon more than he appreciates being second".

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29. On reflection in his 2009 book, Buzz Aldrin said, "Perhaps, if I had it to do over again, I would not choose to celebrate communion.

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30. Buzz Aldrin set foot on the Moon at 03:15:16 on July 21, 1969, nineteen minutes after Armstrong first touched the surface.

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31. Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first and second people, respectively, to walk on the Moon.

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32. Buzz Aldrin positioned himself in front of the video camera and began experimenting with different locomotion methods to move about the lunar surface to aid future moonwalkers.

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33. Buzz Aldrin reentered Eagle first but, as he tells it, before ascending the module's ladder he became the first person to urinate on the Moon.

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34. Buzz Aldrin was involved in the design of the Space Shuttle.

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35. Buzz Aldrin was made Commandant of the USAF Aerospace Research Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, California.

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36. Buzz Aldrin was hospitalized for depression at Wilford Hall Medical Center for four weeks.

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37. Buzz Aldrin elected to retire as a colonel on March 1, 1972, after 21 years of service.

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38. Buzz Aldrin attempted to help others with drinking problems, including actor William Holden.

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39. On September 9, 2002, Buzz Aldrin was lured to a Beverly Hills hotel on the pretext of being interviewed for a Japanese children's television show on the subject of space.

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40. Buzz Aldrin said he had acted to defend himself and his stepdaughter.

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41. In 2005, while being interviewed for a Science Channel documentary titled First on the Moon: The Untold Story, Buzz Aldrin told an interviewer they had seen an unidentified flying object.

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42. Buzz Aldrin made a request to the Science Channel to make a correction, but was refused.

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43. In December 2016, Buzz Aldrin was part of a tourist group visiting the Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station in Antarctica when he fell ill and was evacuated, first to McMurdo Station and from there to Christchurch, New Zealand.

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44. Buzz Aldrin helped to develop UND's Space Studies program and brought Dr David Webb from NASA to serve as the department's first chair.

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45. Buzz Aldrin is a member of the Mars Society's Steering committee.

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46. In 1985, Buzz Aldrin proposed a special spacecraft trajectory now known as the Buzz Aldrin cycler.

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47. In 1996 Buzz Aldrin founded Starcraft Boosters, Inc to design reusable rocket launchers.

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48. In December 2003, Buzz Aldrin published an opinion piece in The New York Times criticizing NASA's objectives.

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49. Buzz Aldrin was awarded the Air Force Distinguished Service Medal in 1969 for his role as lunar module pilot on Apollo 11.

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50. Buzz Aldrin was one of ten Gemini astronauts inducted into the International Space Hall of Fame in 1982.

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51. Buzz Aldrin was inducted into the US Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1993, the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 2000, and the New Jersey Hall of Fame in 2008.

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52. Buzz Aldrin received the 2003 Humanitarian Award from Variety, the Children's Charity, which, according to the organization, "is given to an individual who has shown unusual understanding, empathy, and devotion to mankind.

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53. Buzz Aldrin was a member of the National Space Society's Board of Governors, and has served as the organization's chairman.

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54. In 2019, Buzz Aldrin was awarded the Starmus Festival's Stephen Hawking Medal for Science Communication for Lifetime Achievement.

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55. Buzz Aldrin sought to remove Andrew's control of Aldrin's social media accounts, finances, and businesses.

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56. Buzz Aldrin is an active supporter of the Republican Party, headlining fundraisers for its members of Congress and endorsing its candidates.

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57. Buzz Aldrin appeared at a rally for George W Bush in 2004 and campaigned for Paul Rancatore in Florida in 2008, Mead Treadwell in Alaska in 2014 and Dan Crenshaw in Texas in 2018.

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