NASA plans Yuri's Night celebrations

GREENBELT, Md., March 25 (UPI) -- The Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., is planning to celebrate humanity's achievements in space as well the U.S. center's own 50th anniversary.

Bible message from space still gives hope 40 years on

WASHINGTON, Dec. 24 (UPI) -- When Yuri Gagarin became the first human being to fly in space, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev boasted that he never found God there. But On Christmas Eve 1968, the three American astronauts of Apollo 8 did.

Korean cosmonaut shares culture in space

MOSCOW, April 12 (UPI) -- South Korean President Lee Myung-bak talked to his country's first astronaut Saturday as she orbited the Earth in the International Space Station.

The almanac

UPI Almanac for Saturday, April 12, 2008.
By United Press International

No new investigation into Gagarin death

MOSCOW, March 27 (UPI) -- There is no need for a new investigation into the air crash that killed the first man in space, Yuri Gagarin, 40 years ago, a Russian Air Force official said.

The almanac

UPI Almanac for Sunday, March 9, 2008.
By United Press International

Defense Focus: Engineer truths -- Part 1

WASHINGTON, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Are there lessons for U.S. defense contractors in the record of the Russian civilian space program?
MARTIN SIEFF, UPI Senior News Analyst

ISS crews honor Yuri Gagarin

WASHINGTON, April 12 (UPI) -- The International Space Station crews sent their best wishes to Moscow Thursday in honor of the anniversary of the pioneering space journey of Yuri Gagarin.

The Almanac

UPI almanac for Thursday, April 12, 2007.
By United Press International

The Almanac

UPI almanac for Friday, March 9, 2007.
By United Press International

Software developer to visit ISS

BELLEVUE, Wash., Oct. 27 (UPI) -- A software pioneer and aviator from the United States has booked passage to visit the International Space Station next year.

The Almanac

Today is Wednesday, April 12, the 102nd day of 2006 with 263 to follow.
By United Press International

Watercooler Stories

Parks across country restrict smoking... One-third of Russians have space dreams... New gadgets delight shoppers... Hybrids make HOV motorists mad... Watercooler stories from UPI.
By United Press International

One-third of Russians have space dreams

MOSCOW, April 10 (UPI) -- A poll finds that one-third of Russians have dreams of being a cosmonaut, venturing into space and seeing the world from the sky.

The Almanac

Today is Thursday, March 9, the 68th day of 2006 with 297 to follow.
By United Press International
Page 2 of 5
Yuri Gagarin
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev walks past by Yuri Gagarin's statue in the town of Gagarin on July 31, 2008. The town of Gagarin is named after famed Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin who piloted the first space flight in 1961. (UPI Photo/Anatoli Zhdanov)

Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin (Russian: Ю́рий Алексе́евич Гага́рин, Russian pronunciation: ; 9 March 1934 – 27 March 1968) was a Soviet pilot and cosmonaut. He was the first human being to journey into outer space, when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on April 12, 1961.

Gagarin became an international celebrity, and was awarded many medals and honours, including Hero of the Soviet Union, the nation's highest honour. Vostok 1 marked his only spaceflight, but he served as backup crew to the Soyuz 1 mission (which ended in a fatal crash). Gagarin later became deputy training director of the Cosmonaut Training Centre outside Moscow, which was later named after him. Gagarin died in 1968 when a MiG 15 training jet he was piloting crashed.

Gagarin was born in the village of Klushino near Gzhatsk (now in Smolensk Oblast, Russia), on 9 March 1934. The adjacent town of Gzhatsk was renamed Gagarin in 1968 in his honour. His parents, Alexey Ivanovich Gagarin and Anna Timofeyevna Gagarina, worked on a collective farm. While manual labourers are described in official reports as "peasants", his mother was reportedly a voracious reader, and his father a skilled carpenter. Yuri was the third of four children, and his elder sister helped raise him while his parents worked. Like millions of people in the Soviet Union, the Gagarin family suffered during Nazi occupation in World War II. After a German officer took over their house, the family constructed a small mud hut where they spent a year and nine months until the end of the occupation. His two older siblings were deported to Nazi Germany for slave labour in 1943, and did not return until after the war. In 1946, the family moved to Gzhatsk.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Yuri Gagarin."
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