Alexei Leonov, 1st Human to Walk in Space, Dies in Moscow

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LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – DECEMBER 15: Alexei Leonov listens to Danish astronaut Andreas Mogensen speak at the London Science Museum ahead of the launch of space mission Principia on December 15, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. European Space Agency Astronaut Tim Peake is a former British Army Air Corps Officer and is the first publicly funded Briton in Space. He should arrive at the International Space Station (ISS) at 6.30pm GMT and will spend the next six months maintaining the ISS and conducting experiments. (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia’s space agency 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 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.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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