Monday, March 20, 2023

Apollo 7 astronaut Walter Cunningham has died

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First manned lunar mission

Apollo 7 astronaut Walter Cunningham dies

The last of the three astronauts who orbited the earth for eleven days on the first manned Apollo space flight in 1968 is dead: Walter Cunningham died in Houston on Tuesday at the age of 90, according to the US space agency Nasa.

Walter Cunningham, astronaut on the Apollo 7 mission, is dead. The mission paved the way for the moon landing.

Nasa boss Bill Nelson recognized Walter Cunningham († 90) as a discoverer who, together with his comrades, paved the way for today’s “Artemis” generation. On October 11, 1968, Cunningham took off for the eleven-day Apollo 7 mission under the command of Walter Schirra and with Donn Fulton Eisele. The mission was a success for NASA – the many tests provided important information. Which also paved the way for the moon landing a year later.

There was a lot at stake on the “Apollo 7” mission: around a year and a half earlier, three NASA astronauts died in the fire in the “Apollo 1” capsule during an exercise. The 263-hour, approximately 7.2-million-kilometer flight ended on October 22, 1968 in the Atlantic Ocean. For the first time, “Apollo 7” had a camera with it that enabled live broadcasts on television – a PR coup for Nasa, for which it even won a renowned US television prize, the Emmy. Eisele died in 1987, Schirra in 2007.

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