Buzz Aldrin, second man on moon, evacuated from South Pole

Buzz Aldrin, former NASA Astronaut and Apollo 11 Pilot, prepares to testify on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015, before the Senate subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness hearing on human exploration goals and commercial space competitiveness. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
Buzz Aldrin, former NASA Astronaut and Apollo 11 Pilot, prepares to testify on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015, before the Senate subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness hearing on human exploration goals and commercial space competitiveness. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) – Officials say former American astronaut Buzz Aldrin, one of the first men to walk on the moon, has been evacuated by plane from the South Pole for medical reasons.

An association of Antarctica tour operators said Thursday that 86-year-old Aldrin was visiting the South Pole as part of a private tourist group when his health deteriorated. It said he was taken on the first available flight to McMurdo Station, a U.S. research center on the Antarctic coast. It described his condition as stable.

The National Science Foundation, which manages the U.S. Antarctic program, said Aldrin would be flown from McMurdo to New Zealand.

Aldrin became the second man to walk on the moon in 1969 as part of the U.S. Apollo 11 mission.

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