In astronautics, I most dislike the very uneven distribution of glory. Everyone knows the first cosmonaut, 10 percent of the second, 1 percent of the third, and only geeks will call them later. But they also risked their lives, performed interesting experiments and moved the space program forward. This year, on the Day of Cosmonautics, I wanted to tell about colleagues and rivals of Yuri Gagarin, who, like him, flew on ships of the first generation on both sides of the ocean. Under the cut video lectures and brief information about how the life of the first astronauts after the flight.

The first cosmonauts and astronauts, photo from the archive of the family of test pilot Yuri Bykov and the official photo for Life magazine


During the lecture, I told that the astronaut Scott Carpenter after the flight went into the submariners, and, when they were already flying Gemini, I contacted my former colleagues in space from the bottom of the ocean. This story gave me the idea to tell how the life of the first cosmonauts and astronauts after the flight.


Yuri Gagarina month after returning from space, he went on an international trip and then traveled a lot, visiting about thirty countries.In the fall of 1961, he, together with other astronauts of the first detachment, began studying at the Air Force Engineering Academy. Zhukovsky. In 1964, he became commander of the Soviet cosmonaut detachment and deputy head of the Cosmonaut Training Center. Komarov was a backup for the Soyuz-1 flight, which ended in disaster. I wanted to fly again into space, so I began to restore the qualification of a fighter pilot. He died on March 27, 1968 while performing a training flight on the MiG-15UTI, along with instructor Seregin. Left behind a wife and two daughters. Preserved even information about his little unusual hobbies - water skiing and collecting cacti.
Alan Shepardwho made the first American leap into space, nearly flew a second time on the “Mercury” after astronaut Gordon Cooper flew at a low altitude on a jet plane over the NASA office building. For air hooliganism, Cooper was almost suspended from flying, but in the end, all the same, they changed their mind. Shepard would have been the pilot of the three-day mission “Mercury”, which was canceled, and was assigned to the crew of the first manned flight of the Gemini, but he suddenly had a disease of the inner ear - Meniere's disease.Episodes of severe nausea and dizziness with loss of balance were in no way combined with the control of the spacecraft, and Shepard was suspended from flying. In NASA, he served as chief of the astronaut. The stroke to the portrait - the secretary of Shepard made several photos of Alan full face in a different mood, and these photos were hung out in the office at a special place as “the mood of the day”, so that everyone entering knew the spirit of the chef today. In 1968, Shepard learned that a doctor in Los Angeles had invented an experimental operation for the treatment of Meniere's syndrome, and anonymously passed it. He was lucky - the symptoms were completely gone, and Alan was able to return to the squad again. The crew of Shepard was supposed to fly on the Apollo 13, but he had to exchange with the crew of Jim Lowell and move to the Apollo 14, in which he successfully flew to the moon. After the second space flight, Shepard began to devote more time to his wife and children, and even the publication of the stories of his adultery in the book of Tom Wolfe "Guys what is necessary" did not destroy his marriage. Retired from NASA in 1974 and went into business, which succeeded. He died of cancer in 1998, his wife survived him only five weeks.
Gus GrissomImmediately after the flight, a rather unpleasant time was waiting, because there were people who accused him of sinking because of his lack of professionalism. Astronaut colleague Walter Schirr experimentally proved his innocence. After Shepard's illness, Grissom was in the crew of the first manned mission “Gemini”. He worked so closely with the engineers that the first three ships were jokingly called “gas-movers”. Was a backup for the flight "Gemini-6A", but moved to the project "Apollo". He died in the Apollo-1 disaster in January 1967. He left behind a wife and two sons.
German Titovafter the flight, like the other astronauts of the first set, he entered the Academy. Zhukovsky, which he graduated in spring 1968. He became commander of the second cosmonaut detachment and was engaged in preparing for the flight on the Spiral aerospace system, whose project was closed in the 1970s. In the memoirs of General Kamanin in this period a lot of criticism of Titov. The life of the first cosmonauts of the USSR was not easy - people's love and reverence gave rise to many temptations, and Kamanin demanded almost perfect behavior. In 1972 he received a second higher education, in 1980 he defended his candidate's and then his doctoral dissertation.Until 1991, he worked in the military astronautics. He was elected deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR and the first three convocations of the State Duma of the Russian Federation from the Communist Party of the Russian Federation. He died in 2000.
John glennas the first American to make an orbital flight, it became a national icon, which greatly worsened its chances of flying again. As a result, in 1964, Glenn resigned from NASA and the next day announced his intention to run for office in the Senate from the US Democratic Party in Ohio. But, slipping in the bathroom and having injured the inner ear, was forced to withdraw his candidacy. In 1965, he resigned from the US Marine Corps and got a job in a company for the production of soda. In 1970 he tried again to go to the Senate, but lost the election. And only with the third attempt in 1974, he managed to become a senator. In addition, he participated in the presidential and vice-presidential primaries, but unsuccessfully. In politics, Glenn stayed until 1998, noting not only the support of the science, technology and space sectors, but also his participation in a corruption scandal with Senator John McCain. In addition, thanks to the political support of NASA, he was able to punch his flight on the Space Shuttle in 1998, becoming the oldest astronaut in orbit.He was friends with the Kennedy family. He died in December 2016, having survived all the astronauts of the first set, despite the fact that he was older than them all. Gave the impression of the most "correct" astronaut - an exemplary family man, the elder of the Presbyterian Church, no recklessness and bad habits. Who knows, maybe this really prolongs life?
Scott Carpenterafter landing, Chris Kraft, the head of flights, accused of unqualified piloting, who, according to legend, said that "this son of a bitch will not fly with me anymore." It is difficult to say if Carpenter would have waited for his next flight, but in 1964 he injured his hand in a motorcycle accident. Attempts to improve the mobility of the hand were unsuccessful, and Carpenter was forced to withdraw from the astronaut unit. However, reading his biography, there is a feeling that he found no less interesting hobby - the underwater world. Even before the injury, Scott took a vacation in NASA to participate in the project SEALAB underwater laboratory. In 1965, he spent 28 days under water in the SEALAB II laboratory, from where he held a communication session with his colleague on the first set of astronauts Gordon Cooper, who went into space on Gemini 5.After SEALAB II, he returned to NASA for an administrative position, developed programs for underwater training of astronauts for work in weightlessness, then went to the next deep-water project. He retired in 1969, founded the company Sea Sciences, Inc., which was engaged in the use of ocean resources and the environment. He was married four times, had seven children from three wives. He died in 2013.
Andriyan Nikolaevas well as Gagarin and Titov, after the flight in parallel with the work in the cosmonaut detachment went to the academy. In 1963, he married Valentina Tereshkova, with whom he was married until 1983. In his diaries, General Kamanin writes that Valentina captured “the unlimited power in the family”. Married daughter was Helen. In 1970, Andriyan set off for space for the second time on the Soyuz-9 spacecraft together with the cosmonaut Sevastyanov. In a long flight of more than 17 days, the astronauts had their first communication session with relatives (the daughter of Nikolaev on that day turned 6 years old) and the first space holiday with the Earth-Cosmos chess match. Was in the group of the lunar program. He worked as deputy head of the Cosmonaut Training Center and, in parallel, was a deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the RSFSR several convocations. Since 1994, he worked in the Office of the Mandate Commission of the State Duma of the Russian Federation.Died suddenly in 2004 after refereeing of the Vth All-Russian Summer Rural Sports Games in Cheboksary. After death, some scandal broke out because of the burial site. Nikolayev was buried in his native village of Shorshely, and his daughter and ex-wife supported the burial in Star City. However, according to available information, the parties later came to reconciliation.
Pavel Popovichhe also graduated from the academy after the flight, and in the cosmonaut detachment was secretary of the party organization. It was planned that he would go on the first joint flight on the "Union" with a female astronaut, but the mission was canceled. The military version of the Soyuz-7K-VI Union should have been tested, but this project was also canceled. He was part of the astronauts group of the lunar program. The second flight made on the "Soyuz-14" with astronaut Artyukhin to the military station "Almaz" ("Salyut-3"), where he spent 15 days. He was a deputy to the Supreme Soviets of the USSR and the Ukrainian SSR. In 1977 he defended his thesis. In 1982 he was expelled from the cosmonaut corps with retaining the post of deputy chief of the Cosmonaut Training Center. Since 1991, he was director of the Russian Institute for Monitoring Lands and Ecosystems, then he worked as chairman of the board of directors of the All-Russian Institute of Agricultural Aero-Geodetic Surveys (WISGAGI).He was interested in ufology, was a member of the commission on anomalous atmospheric phenomena (UFO) of the USSR Academy of Sciences, then became president of the Ufological Association of Russia. He was married twice, had two daughters from his first marriage. He died in 2009.
Walter Schirrabecame the first astronaut who made three space flights. The second time he went into space on the "Gemini 6A". At the start, the engine turned off abnormally and, contrary to the instructions, Schirra and Stafford did not eject. The decision was right, they saved the ship and went to the flight in three days. Already in orbit, Shirra arranged one of the first space jokes, smuggling the harmonica and playing the Jingle Bells after a report on finding a UFO with Santa Claus. The third space flight performed on the Apollo-7. Led the first in the history of direct television reporting from orbit, for which he received an Emmy Award. Cold symptoms appeared in orbit, already in flight infected a colleague in the crew. The cold on board the Apollo 7 became so famous that Schirra was later invited to advertise the version of the cold medicine that was released on the market, which was in the on-board first-aid kit.He was a consultant to CBS News, commenting on Apollo’s subsequent space missions. After the third flight, he left NASA, held high positions in various companies, then founded his own. He was married once, had two children. He died in 2007.
Gordon coopermade a second flight in two years (in 1965). He flew Gemini 5 with Pete Conrad and set a new record for the duration of his stay in space - as many as 8 days. He was the understudy of the Apollo 10 mission because of what he hoped to get on the Apollo 13, but Shepard’s crew was appointed there. Cooper himself wrote in his memoirs that Shepard managed to climb out of turn because of his friendship with Dick Slayton (the astronaut of the first set, was transferred to an administrative position for health, after many years he was able to fly the Soyuz-Apollo program). Slayton, in his memoirs, wrote that Cooper had relaxed before “Gemini-5”, and he had to literally persuade him to train in the simulator. Slayton wrote that if Cooper brilliantly proved himself as an understudy on the Apollo 10, he would still have some chances to get an appointment to the Apollo 13, but he did not. Disappointed, Cooper left NASA in 1970 and worked as a technical consultant at a variety of companies, even managing to work for The Walt Disney Company.In 1971, he divorced his wife and married a second time, had two daughters in each marriage. He was a convinced ufologist, argued that he saw a UFO and believed that the government was hiding contacts with aliens. He died in 2004. His ashes were launched three times into space - on a suborbital mission, on Falcon 1 (lost in an accident) and Falcon 9 / Dragon to the ISS.
Valery Bykovsky, like many other astronauts of the first detachment, graduated from the academy after the flight. He was the commander of the Soyuz-2, which was supposed to dock with Soyuz-1, Komarov, but because of an accident in orbit, the flight was canceled, and the death of Komarov showed that the crew would crash on Soyuz-2. The second flight made on the "Soyuz-22" with cosmonaut Vladimir Aksyonov, it was the only "Soyuz" launched at a large inclination of 64.76 ° orbit. The main task in flight was multispectral photography of the Earth. The third flight made with the first cosmonaut of the GDR Sigmund Yen to the Salyut-6 station. He was the commander of the lunar group of Soviet cosmonauts. He left the cosmonaut corps in 1988. He is married and has two sons. According to public information, it is alive, but not public, and what it has been doing for the past thirty years is not given.
Valentina Tereshkovaalso after the flight graduated from the Academy. Zhukovsky, but General Kamanin noted that it would be better for her to get a higher education in the profile of social work. Kamanin was right about something, because Tereshkova didn’t fly to outer space anymore, and she devoted her whole life to social and political activities - headed by the Soviet Women’s Committee, was a deputy to the USSR Supreme Council until 1989. Since 2011, the deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation from the party "United Russia". Carried the Olympic flag at the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Sochi. Two times she was married, has a daughter from her first marriage. In March of this year, she turned 80 years old.

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