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Early life Yuri 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 honor. His parents, Alexei Ivanovich Gagarin and Anna Timofeyevna Gagarina, worked on a collective farm.
Career in the Soviet space program Selection and training Post-graduation, he was assigned to Luostari airbase in Murmansk Oblast, close to the Norwegian border, where terrible weather made flying risky. In 1958 space officials recruited air force pilots to train as cosmonauts.
Career in the Soviet space program Selection and training Space officials closely observed the trainees. They finally selected Gagarin for the first spaceflight. Capable, strong, and even-tempered, Gagarin represented the ideal Soviet man, a peasant farmer who became a highly trained cosmonaut in a few short years.
Career in the Soviet space program Space flight He was launched in Vostok 1 on the planned date, and during the crowded 1 hour 48 minutes of his single orbit of the earth he proved that man could survive in space and perform useful tasks. His mission ended at 10:55 A.M., when he landed safely in a field near Saratov
Career in the Soviet space program Fame and later life In 1962, he began serving as a deputy to the Supreme Soviet. He later returned to Star City, the cosmonaut facility, where he worked on designs for a reusable spacecraft. Gagarin worked on these designs in Star City for 7 years.
Death and legacy American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin left one of Gagarin's medals on the moon as a tribute. The cosmonaut training center where he had first trained was named after him. A crater on the moon bears his name, as does Gagarin Square in Moscow with its soaring monument, along with a number of monuments and streets in cities throughout Russia. At Baikonur, a reproduction of his training room is traditionally visited by space crews before a launch. Russians celebrate Cosmonaut Day on April 12 every year in honor of Gagarin's historic flight.
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