NASA astronaut Thomas Stafford, who sent the Apollo 10 spacecraft to the moon, has died at the age of 93.

The former commander who completed a total of four space missions, was the first man to launch a lunar module into the orbit of a natural satellite, among other major historical achievements.

Thomas Stafford. Photo: X @nexta_tv.

General Thomas StaffordSpace NASA One of the orbiters of vin Luna in a mission ApolloHe passed away this Monday 93 years Old man in hospital Florida (United States), the museum that bears his name reports.

Stafford, Mission Commander Apollo 10May 1969And who was the first man to pilot a lunar module into orbit of a natural satellite. Four space missionsAlthough it did not descend to the surface.

Thomas Stafford.  Photo: X @SPACEdotcomThomas Stafford. Photo: X @SPACEdotcom

Born in Weatherford (Oklahoma), one of Stafford 24 astronauts That flew Luna And the work on its flights stands out Gemini 6 From December 1965It marked the first encounter of two capsules in orbit, a maneuver that was key to the space agency's mission to reach the Moon.

As he recalled Air Museum And this Stafford SpaceWith the Apollo 10 mission, Stafford and the rest of the team a Speed ​​is 24,791 miles per hour (39,897 km/h) on re-entry into Earth's atmosphere, a An unbeaten record To this day.

After this mission, Stafford was selected as the head of NASA Astronaut Office Later served as Deputy Director Flight crew operations at Johnson Space Center (Texas).

Thomas Stafford.  Photo: X @ASE_AstronautsThomas Stafford. Photo: X @ASE_Astronauts

In 1975Stafford, then the first astronaut to hold the rank of brigadier general, was one of the commanders of the Apollo spacecraft and a historic mission. Soyuz They joined while in orbit, the first space link between the United States and the now-defunct United States Soviet Union.

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Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko holds the record for the longest time in space.  Photo: EFE

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A giant in the “Eternal Skies”.

“General Stafford received a recommendation Nobel Peace Prize“, many still see the success of that mission as the beginning of the end of the Cold War,” the museum said in a post on its website on Monday. According to the museum, he is survived by his wife, Linda, and two children. sons and two daughters. , and two grandchildren.

NASA administrator Bill NelsonIn a post published by him on the social networking site, he said:XThose who knew the astronautSo sad, but thank you for meeting such a great person“.

“General Tom Stafford left today The eternal heavens he explored so boldly As a Gemini and Apollo astronaut and as a peacekeeper on the Apollo Soyuz (mission),” Nelson concluded.

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