He was awarded the “Presidential Medal of Freedom”, the highest American civilian decoration.
“Today, America has lost a true pioneer and lifelong advocate of research, astronaut Michael Collins. As the pilot of the Apollo 11 command module, some called him ‘the loneliest man in history’, while his colleagues walked on the moon for the first time, he helped our nation in the moments of the turning point “, pointed out Steve Jurcik from NASA.
He was born in Rome, Italy, where his father was a diplomat. He graduated from the West Point Military Academy in 1952, and as a military pilot he flew to American military bases in Europe. Nase became an astronaut in 1963, and on July 18, 1966, he flew into space for the first time. During that mission, he became the first man to take a short walk in space.
He inspired a new generation of scientists, engineers, test pilots and astronauts.
“Nasa mourns the death of an experienced pilot and astronaut, a friend. Regardless of whether his work was behind the scenes or in full resolution, the first trace of America in space remains behind him. And his spirit will accompany us in conquering endless distances. “
“We will fulfill his wish to remember him, without mourning him. “Let’s remember together his sharp wit, his search for purpose and perspective, his view of the Earth from space and his view of the calm waters from the deck of a fishing boat,” said members of Michael Collins’ family.