Frank Borman Dies At 95

(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Mariane Angela Contributor
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Astronaut Frank Borman, who commanded the Apollo 8 mission in 1968, passed away Tuesday at the age of 95 in Billings, Montana.

Borman was a veteran of NASA’s space program who achieved iconic status as part of the first Apollo mission to journey to the moon. The crew, comprising Borman, James Lovell, and William Anders, circled the moon ten times during their historic flight. Borman’s significant contributions to space exploration were acknowledged by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, who described him as a “true American hero.”

The Apollo 8 mission, launched from Cape Canaveral on December 21, 1968, marked a pivotal moment in space exploration. The crew spent three days traveling to the moon and entered lunar orbit on Christmas Eve. During their mission, the astronauts conducted a live telecast from the orbiter, featuring a reading from the Book of Genesis, The Associated Press (AP) reported. (RELATED: Last Remaining Apollo 7 Astronaut Dead At 90)

Borman’s space journey began earlier with the Gemini 7 mission in 1965, where he and Lovell completed the first space orbital rendezvous with Gemini 6. Reflecting on the challenges of the Gemini mission, Borman compared his endevours humorously. “Gemini was a tough go,” Borman previously told The AP. “It was smaller than the front seat of a Volkswagen bug. It made Apollo seem like a super-duper, plush touring bus.”

Following his NASA career, the late astronaut ventured into business and became a key figure at Eastern Airlines. However, the airline faced financial hardships and labor tensions, leading to Borman’s resignation in 1986. Later in life, he continued his passion for flying and even started a cattle ranch in Bighorn, Montana, with his son, The AP added.