Yuri Gagarin, Soviet cosmonaut

Yuri Gagarin, Soviet cosmonaut

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Credit: SPUTNIK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Yuri Gagarin (1934-1968), Soviet cosmonaut and the first human in space. Here, he is in military uniform with his medals and other decorations. Gagarin orbited the Earth in the Vostok 1 spacecraft on 12 April 1961. He became famous worldwide, receiving many awards for his feat, including Hero of the Soviet Union. Following his spaceflight, Gagarin undertook many tours around the world and within the USSR. He later returned to active service as a test pilot, dying in a crash during a training flight in 1968. Photographed in Moscow, Russia, in June 1966.

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