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|MAJOR GENERAL ALEXEI LEONOV|
Born: May 30, 1934 in Kemerovo Oblast, USSR
Alexey Arkhipovich Leonov was born 30 May 1934 in Listvyanka, Kemerovo
Oblast, Soviet Union, is a retired Soviet/Russian cosmonaut and Air Force Major
General who, on 18 March 1965, became the first human to conduct an
extra-vehicular activity (EVA), also known as a space walk.
Leonov was one of the 20 Soviet Air Force pilots selected to be part of the
first cosmonaut group in 1960. Like all the Soviet cosmonauts Leonov was a
member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. His walk in space was
originally to have taken place on the Vostok 11 mission, but this was cancelled,
and the historic event happened on the Voskhod 2 flight instead. He was outside
the spacecraft for 12 minutes and nine seconds on 18 March 1965, connected to
the craft by a 5.35-meter tether. At the end of the spacewalk, Leonov's
spacesuit had inflated in the vacuum of space to the point where he could not
re-enter the airlock. He opened a valve to allow some of the suit's pressure to
bleed off, and was barely able to get back inside the capsule. Leonov had spent
some eighteen months undergoing intensive weightlessness training for the