MOSCOW (Reuters) - The Soviet Union’s only non-Communist astronaut, Konstantin Feoktistov, has died at the age of 83, Russia’s space agency said on Sunday.
Feoktistov, who also designed spaceships and has a crater on the moon named after him, was the only astronaut from the Soviet Union who did not belong to the Communist party -- an unwritten requirement he dodged much to the irritation of authorities.
He was born in the city of Voronezh in southwest Russia and died on Saturday, the space agency said in a statement on its site roscosmos.ru.
A World War Two veteran, Feoktistov went to space in 1964 aboard the Voskhod spaceship, the world’s first group space flight.
He worked as a professor in Moscow until 2005 and helped design the Soviet rockets Soyuz, Salyut and Mir, Russian media reported.
Reporting by Amie Ferris-Rotman; Editing by Dominic Evans
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