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Aleksei Arkhipovich Leonov (One Small Step for a Socialist...)

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Aleksei (or Alexei) A. Leonov

Commander of the first manned mission to the Moon. Landing the LK-5 on the Ocean of Storms region, Leonov set foot on the lunar surface on July 20, 1969. LOK-13 pilot Vladislav Volkov remained in orbit while the lunar explorer gathered rock samples and planted the Soviet flag on the surface.

They returned to a heroes' welcome on July 24th, receiving both the "Hero of the Soviet Union" decoration, and a new decoration, the "Lenin's Order of Space Exploration", from Brezhnev.

Leonov retired from the space program and lectured across the world in the 1970s and 1980s.

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