The U.S. military air crew that evacuated former astronaut Buzz Aldrin from the South Pole is a New York-based National Guard unit that specializes in missions to some of the world's most remote places.
The 86-year-old former astronaut was in stable condition when he left the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station on an emergency flight to McMurdo Station, a US scientific base on Antarctica's Ross Island, tour operator White Desert said. He was flown from McMurdo Station in Antarctica to Christchurch, New Zealand, and was responding well to antibiotics.
Aldrin appeared in good spirits on Saturday after receiving a visit from NASA Deputy Administrator Dava Newman at Christchurch Hospital.
Aldrin was on a sightseeing tour with his son Andrew, according to the Associated Press.
"Mr. Aldrin was visiting the Pole as part of a tourist group and while there his condition deteriorated", White Desert said in a statement.
Aldrin documented his epic journey - from flights between Dubai and Cape Town, South Africa, to safety training alongside with manager, Christina Korp - on his Twitter page. Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, was evacuated from the South Pole to New Zealand where he was in a hospital on Friday in stable condition.
Edwin E. "Buzz" Aldrin, the second man to step foot on the moon, has faced personal obstacles ever since returning from the mission. The trip was expected to last through December 12.
After the flight to McMurdo on a ski-equipped LC-130 military cargo plane, Aldrin is to be flown to New Zealand as soon as possible.
Korp said on Twitter she'd told Aldrin he now holds the record as the oldest person to reach the South Pole, according to the National Science Foundation. If you would like to discuss another topic, look for a relevant article.