Technology & Science

Alexei Leonov, 1st person to walk in space, dies at 85

Russia's space agency says Alexei Leonov, the first human to walk in space 54 years ago, has died in Moscow. He was 85.

Leonov conducted first spacewalk on March 18, 1965

Alexei Leonov, the first person to ever conduct a spacewalk, died at the age of 85. (EPA/Martial Trezzini)

Russia's space agency, Roscosmos, says Alexei Leonov, the first human to walk in space 54 years ago, has died in Moscow. He was 85.

Roscosmos says in a statement on its website that Leonov died on Friday. It did not provide details.

Leonov performed his spacewalk on March 18, 1965, when he exited his Voskhod 2 capsule, secured by a tether.

On March 18, 1965, Leonov left his Voskhod spacecraft for 10 minutes to become the first person ever to walk in space. (Central Press/Getty Images)

On his second trip to space ten years later, Leonov commanded the Soviet half of the Apollo-Soyuz 19 mission. It was the first joint space mission between the Soviet Union and the United States, carried out at the height of the Cold War.

The cosmonaut turned 85 in May. Several days before that, two Russian crewmembers on the International Space Station ventured into open space on a planned spacewalk with stickers attached on their spacesuits paying tribute to him, and congratulated him from space.

Roscosmos said Leonov would be buried Tuesday at a military memorial cemetery outside Moscow.

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