Former NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin to be evacuated from Antarctica after falling ill

86-year-old was second man to walk on the Moon
Posted at 8:57 AM, Dec 01, 2016

Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the Moon, will be evacuated from Antarctica after falling ill.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) agreed to provide a humanitarian medical evacuation for Aldrin. The 86-year-old NASA legend will be flown from the NSF's Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station to McMurdo Station on the Antarctic coast and then onto New Zealand.

The flight from the South Pole to McMurdo was conducted Thursday morning by the Airlift Wing of the New York Air National Guard using a ski-equipped LC-130 cargo plane. Officials say the flight to New Zealand will be scheduled as soon as possible.

Aldrin tweeted a number of photos earlier this week as he prepared to visit Antarctica.


A South African tourism company asked the NSF for the emergency medical flight.

According to the International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators, Aldrin was in "stable" condition when he arrived at McMurdo. What illness the former astronaut is suffering from has not been disclosed.

Aldrin, Neil Armstrong and Michael Collins were the members of NASA's historic Apollo 11moon mission in July 1969. Armstrong walked on the moon first, followed shortly by Aldrin.