Frank Borman, the Commander of Apollo 8 and a renowned aviator, passed away, leaving a void in the aviation and space exploration community. Borman, along with two other astronauts, made history by becoming the first humans to venture beyond low Earth orbit, witness the beauty of the Earth as a whole, and catch a glimpse of the far side of the Moon.
Their iconic moment came during a live television broadcast on Christmas Eve in 1968 when Borman and his crewmates read a passage from the Book of Genesis. This reading was seen as a profound and uplifting moment that “saved 1968” – a year marked by great social and political turmoil.
In addition to his contributions to space exploration, Borman had a deep passion for aviation. He was a founding member of the USAF Heritage Flight and dedicated himself to meticulously restoring warbirds. Among his notable aircraft were a Convair L-13A utility aircraft, a Harvard Mk.4, an Aero L-39C, and a trio of North American fighters.
Borman’s collection also included a Cessna L-19 and a T-34A, both of which were operated by him. His aircraft restorations garnered numerous air show prizes, with his P-51 and P-63 earning top honors at the EAA Sun n’ Fun show. Beyond warbirds, Borman had significant aviation interests and was an EAA Lifetime member.
The news of Frank Borman’s passing has been met with great sadness, particularly among those in the aviation community. Simon Brown of Platinum Fighter Sales, who lovingly restored Borman’s cherished P-63 King Cobra, expressed his sorrow at the loss.
With Borman’s death, the number of living astronauts from the Apollo flight crews has dwindled to just eleven out of the original 36. This serves as a sobering reminder of the passage of time and the sacrifices made by those who have ventured into space.
Frank Borman’s legacy as a trailblazing astronaut and dedicated aviator will undoubtedly live on, inspiring future generations to dream big and reach for the stars. His remarkable achievements and contributions to both space exploration and aviation will forever be remembered.
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