Legendary Apollo Astronaut Passes Away at 95: Remembering the First Mission to the Moon

In 1968, Astronaut Frank Borman made history as the commander of the Apollo 8 mission, becoming one of the first people to orbit the moon. However, on November 7, 2023, Borman passed away at the age of 95 in Billings, Montana.

The news of Borman’s death was announced by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, who paid tribute to the late astronaut, saying, “Today, we remember one of NASA’s finest. Astronaut Frank Borman was a true American hero and among his many achievements, he served as the commander of the Apollo 8 mission.”

Borman’s journey to becoming an astronaut began as a fighter and test pilot in the Air Force. In 1962, he was selected as part of NASA’s second astronaut class and went on to be a part of the Gemini 7 mission before commanding the Apollo 8 flight.

During the Apollo 8 mission, Borman and his crew captured the iconic ”Earthrise” photo while orbiting the moon. Using a handheld TV camera, Borman famously announced, “This is Apollo 8 coming to you live from the moon.” The crew also shared lines from the book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible, “In the beginning, God created heaven and Earth…”

Reflecting on the experience, Borman shared, “Because of the wonderment of it and the fact that the Earth looked so lonely in the universe. It’s the only thing with color. All of our emotions were focused back there with our families as well. So that was the most emotional part of the flight for me.”

After his time with NASA, Borman went on to become the CEO of Eastern Airlines. He continued to inspire and educate others about space exploration and his life as an astronaut.

In the video below, you can learn more about Borman’s remarkable life and career as an astronaut.

Borman’s passing comes just a week after the death of fellow Apollo astronaut Thomas K. Mattingly II, who passed away on October 31st at the age of 87. Both Borman and Mattingly will be remembered for their contributions to space exploration and their bravery in pushing the boundaries of human exploration.