Fifty-one years ago (April 12 1961) a Soviet Cosmonaut, Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin, journeyed into outer space in the Vostok 3KA-3 (Vostok 1), orbited the Earth, and returned. His historic flight made Yuri an international celebrity.
He stood only 5 ft. 2 in. tall (1.57 m), but had an engaging smile and a remarkable public persona.
With the NHL playoffs official start yesterday, it’s apropos to mention that Yuri Gagarin was an avid hockey player (he was a goalie).
His death (on March 27 1968) was steeped in conspiracy theories: Gagarin and flight instructor Vladimir Servogin crashed and died during a routine training flight in a MiG-15UTI.