John Young, one of the last living Apollo moon-walkers, dies at 86


John Young, an astronaut who has flown to the moon twice in his career, has died. He was 86.

According to the announcement, shared on NASA’s blog and Twitter account, Young died Friday night following complications from pneumonia.

NASA reports Young is the only agency astronaut to go into space as part of the Gemini, Apollo, and Space Shuttle programs, and he was the first to fly into space six times. As part of those missions, Young also flew to the moon twice. Prior to joining NASA, Young served in the U.S. Navy, where he retired as a captain.

Prior to his death, Young was one of six living Apollo astronauts who walked on the moon, out of the 12 total. The five astronauts remaining include Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, Alan Bean, David Scott, Charles Duke, Jr., and Harrison “Jack” Schmitt.

“Today, NASA and the world have lost a pioneer. Astronaut John Young’s storied career spanned three generations of spaceflight; we will stand on his shoulders as we look toward the next human frontier,” acting NASA Administrator Robert Lightfoot said in a statement. “John Young was at the forefront of human space exploration with his poise, talent, and tenacity. He was in every way the ‘astronaut’s astronaut.’ We will miss him.”

Samantha Grasso

Samantha Grasso

Samantha Grasso is a former IRL staff writer for the Daily Dot with a reporting emphasis on immigration. Her work has appeared on Los Angeles Magazine, Death And Taxes, Revelist, Texts From Last Night, Austin Monthly, and she has previously contributed to Texas Monthly.