US astronaut Gene Cernan – the last man to walk on the Moon – has died aged 82, reports BBC News.
NASA, America’s space body stated that the loss was saddening as they have lost one of its retired spacemen.
Captain Cernan is one of the only three people who have gone to the moon twice. He is also the last man to have stepped on the lunar surface in 1972.
His last words on the moon were as follows:
We leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return with peace and hope for all mankind.
At his time of leadership in space, he commanded the Apollo 17 mission.
Out of the 12 people who have walked on the moon, only six people are alive today.
While announcing his death, Mr. Cerman’s family said that he had died as a result of an ongoing health sickness. His family did not elaborate further on the details.
The statement read: “It is with very deep sadness that we share the loss of our beloved husband and father. Our family is heartbroken.”
The family said that even at the age of 82, Gene was still eager to see human kind explore space further and urged the world leaders “not to let him be the last man to walk on the Moon.”
Before commanding the Apollo 17 mission, Cernan had made two visits in space. The first was in 1966 and the other one in 1969.
Via The Mirror
Considering his naval aviation qualification, he was chosen into the third NASA group of astronauts in 1963.
He then retired in 1976 and ventured into private business and also became a major contributor in US TV channels over a variety of subjects.
He has also produced a documentary film about his life.
He was born in March 14th 1934 Chicago with full names Eugene Andrew Cernan.
He lives behind his wife Jan Nanna Cernan, a biological daughter and two step-daughters and nine grandchildren.
The family said they would make announcement of burial plans in the next few weeks.
Gene Cernan’s death has happened just some few weeks after the death of another astronaut, John Glenn.