Buzz Aldrin’s OK after South Pole medical scare

Buzz Aldrin and Christina Korp
Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin flashes a thumbs-up during his evacuation from Antarctica to New Zealand. His manager, Christina Korp, is in the foreground, taking the selfie shot. (Christina Korp Photo via Twitter)

Buzz Aldrin’s South Pole adventure turned into a medical emergency when his health deteriorated, but his manager says the Apollo 11 moonwalker is safe today in a New Zealand hospital.

The 86-year-old’s health declined during a tour of Antarctica, an adventure travel firm called White Desert said in a statement today.

Aldrin was handed over to the National Science Foundation for a medical airlift. The first leg of the outward trip took Aldrin from NSF’s Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station to McMurdo Station on Ross Island, aboard a ski-equipped LC-130 cargo plane from the New York Air National Guard. He was flown from McMurdo to Christchurch, New Zealand, aboard a Safair cargo plane, NSF said.

White Desert said Aldrin was taken to a Christchurch hospital, where he was found to have fluid in his lungs. The travel firm said he was “responding well to antibiotics and being kept overnight for observation.”

“His condition is stable, and his manager, who is currently with him, described him being in good spirits,” White Desert said.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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