Buzz Aldrin Fact File Biography: Lifespan: 1930 – Present *** Full Name: Buzz Aldrin was also known as Edwin Eugene Aldrin *** Date of Birth (Birthday): He was born on January 20, 1930 *** Place of Birth: Buzz Aldrin was born in Montclair, Essex County, New Jersey, United States *** Family background: His father was a colonel in the U.S. Air Force, his name was Edwin Eugene Aldrin Sr. *** Early life and childhood: Buzz Aldrin grew up and spent the majority of his life in Essex County *** Education: Buzz Aldrin began his education at Montclair High School ***
Buzz Aldrin Fact 1: Edwin Eugene "Buzz" Aldrin, Jr. was born on January 20, 1930 in Montclair, Essex County, New Jersey, United States.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 2: He is a former American NASA astronaut who is famously known for being the second person to walk on the moon. Buzz Aldrin is also a former engineer, U.S. Air Force officer and a Command Pilot. He is a successful author with numerous publications.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 3: His parents were called Edwin Eugene Aldrin Sr. and Marion Gaddys (née Moon). His father served as a colonel in the U.S. Air Force and he took Buzz Aldrin on his first flight when he was two years old in a Lockheed Vega.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 4: He attended Montclair High School in Essex County, New Jersey. Buzz Aldrin loved playing football and attending the Boy Scouts where he achieved the rank of Tenderfoot Scout.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 5: His birth name was Edwin Eugene, he earned the nickname 'Buzz' during his childhood when his younger sister kept referring to her brother as 'buzzer'. The word 'buzzer' soon became shortened to 'Buzz' and it stuck. In 1988, he legally changed his first name to Buzz.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 6: In 1947, Buzz Aldrin graduated from Montclair High School. He declined an offer of scholarship from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and joined the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York instead.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 7: In 1951, he graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point. He was third in his class with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 8: After graduation from West Point, he became a fighter pilot for the United States Air Force. He served during the Korean War, flying F-86 Sabre Jets in 66 combat missions and successfully shooting down two MiGs. In honor of his outstanding service during the Korean War, he was decorated with the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 9: He returned home in 1953 to continue his education. Buzz Aldrin joined Massachusetts Institute of Technology where his thesis subject was based on 'Line-of-sight guidance techniques for manned orbital rendezvous'. He graduated in 1963 with a Ph.D in aeronautics and astronautics.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 10: He was accepted into the space program following his graduation from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His entry was helped by his extensive research into bringing piloted spacecraft into close proximity with one other. Buzz Aldrin became known by the nickname 'Dr Rendezvous' as a result of his orbital space rendezvous design experience.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 11: In October 1963, Buzz Aldrin was chosen by NASA to attempt to rendezvous and dock with a target vehicle in space as part of NASA's Gemini program. The attempt to pioneer space flight was unsuccessful.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 12: Buzz Aldrin was the first astronaut to be provided with scuba gear in order to train for spacewalks and the weightlessness that he would experience.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 13: He was assigned to the Gemini 12 mission with Jim Lovell. The mission took place from November 11 to November 15, 1966. During the space flight, Buzz Aldrin broke a record when he carried out a 5 hour spacewalk which earned him the most successful spacewalk on record up until that time.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 14: During the Gemini 12 mission, the on-board radar failed leaving Buzz Aldrin to manually recalculate the flight's docking manoeuvres. His safe return to Earth with astronaut, Jim Lovell, brought NASA's Gemini program to a close.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 15: Buzz Aldrin was assigned to the Apollo 8 mission as backup Command Module Pilot which was the first flight to the moon made by man. Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins were also assigned as backup crew.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 16: Buzz Aldrin served as the lunar module pilot for the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission and made history as he became the second man to walk on the moon shortly after Neil Armstrong. The moonwalk was televised and drew in the largest audience in the history of television. The moon walk lasted for 21 hours and they brought 46 pounds of moon rocks back to Earth.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 17: Following his safe return from the Apollo 11 lunar landing mission, Buzz Aldrin was decorated with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He was also presented with a 45 day international goodwill tour. Four stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame honour the crew of Apollo 11.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 18: During his NASA career, he achieved 4,500 hours of flying time. The total amount of time recorded in space is 290 hours, 8 of which he is credited for EVA (extra-vehicular activity). Buzz Aldrin retired from active service in March 1972 and returned to a managerial position in the United States Air Force.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 19: He is a successful children's author with a range of books including The Return and Encounter with Tiber, Reaching for the Moon, and Look to the Stars. He has written an autobiography called Magnificent Desolation which was published in 2009.
Buzz Aldrin Fact 20: During his lifetime, he has been married three times. He married Joan Archer, Beverly Zile and Lois Driggs Cannon. His final marriage came to an end in 2012. Buzz Aldrin has three children called Janice, James and Andrew.
Influence & Legacy: Buzz Aldrin is a famous former astronaut from the United States. He took part in the historic Apollo 11 lunar landing mission and alongside Neil Armstrong, they became the first humans to land as well as walk on the moon!.