John Young in Photos: Astronaut, Moonwalker and Space Shuttle Pioneer

Gemini 3 pilot John Young seen through the hatch window of his spacecraft prior to launch in 1965.
Gemini 3 pilot John Young seen through the hatch window of his spacecraft prior to launch in 1965. (Image credit: NASA)

Astronaut John Young


Astronaut John Young, a veteran of six space missions, died Jan. 5, 2018 due to complications with pneumonia. See his storied career, which took Young to the moon and back, then on NASA shuttles, in photos here. In this image, Young is seen during training for his Apollo 16 moon landing mission, which he commanded, in 1971.

John Young


John Young, the ninth man to walk on the moon, flew on three NASA programs: Gemini, Apollo and the space shuttle.

Gemini 3 Mission

NASA/MSFC archives

On March 23, 1965, astronauts Virgil I. “Gus” Grissom and John W. Young participated in the first crewed Gemini flight, Gemini III. The flight of the “Molly Brown,” which was named after the Broadway musical and was a reference to Grissom’s previous Mercury craft, the Liberty Bell 7, which sank shortly after splashdown, was intended to test the new maneuverable Gemini spacecraft. The mission was considered a success despite a few thruster issues and the sudden appearance of a contraband corned beef sandwich. This photo was taken of the two pilots in the spacecraft simulator at the McDonnell plant in St. Louis, Missouri.

Gemini Water Egress Training


Astronauts John Young and Gus Grissom are pictured during water egress training in a large indoor pool at Ellington Air Force Base, Texas, in this image from 1965. Young is seated on top of the Gemini capsule while Grissom is in the water with a life raft.

Gemini 3 Liftoff


Gemini 3 lifts off atop a Titan rocket from Cape Canaveral's Pad 19 in Florida at 9:24 a.m. EST on March 23, 1965.

Apollo 10: Command Module Pilot


Astronaut John W. Young, in this official NASA photo, was chosen as the prime crew command module pilot for the Apollo 10 lunar orbit mission.

Practice for Success


During an April 3, 1969 simulation, astronaut John W. Young, Apollo 10 prime crew command module pilot, trains in the Apollo Mission Simulator at Kennedy Space Center.

How to Exit a Spacecraft


In an August 1968 training, the three prime crewmembers of the Apollo 10 lunar orbit mission participate in a water egress simulation in a Building 260 tank at the Manned Spacecraft Center. Astronaut John W. Young waits in the life raft as Eugene A. Cernan exits the Apollo Command Module and Thomas P. Stafford waits inside the craft with a trainer.

John Young's Apollo 10


Before the May 18, 1969 launch of the Apollo 10 lunar orbit mission, technicians complete some final tests and fittings for the spacesuit while astronaut John W. Young, command module pilot, waits. Following the firings, Young joins astronauts Thomas P. Stafford, commander, and Eugene A. Cernan, lunar module pilot, in the transfer van from Kennedy Space Center's Manned Spacecraft Operations Building to Launch Complex 39, Pad B where the Apollo 10 spacecraft was ready for launch.

Tight Spaces


On January 15, 1968, the prime crew for the Apollo 10 lunar orbital mission, participates in a simulation inside the Command Module Simulator. Astronaut John W. Young, command module pilot, is seen here in the training in Building 5.

Off to the Races


On May 18, 1969, the prime crew for the Apollo 10 lunar orbital mission - from right to left, astronaut John W. Young, command module pilot, followed by astronauts Thomas P. Stafford, commander; and Eugene A. Cernan, lunar module pilot — enter the transfer van and head to Launch Complex 39, Pad B at Kennedy Space Center for launch.

Join our Space Forums to keep talking space on the latest missions, night sky and more! And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at:

Tariq Malik

Tariq is the Editor-in-Chief of and joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and staff writer, and later as an editor. He covers human spaceflight, exploration and space science, as well as skywatching and entertainment. He became's Managing Editor in 2009 and Editor-in-Chief in 2019. Before joining, Tariq was a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering education and city beats in La Habra, Fullerton and Huntington Beach. In October 2022, Tariq received the Harry Kolcum Award for excellence in space reporting from the National Space Club Florida Committee. He is also an Eagle Scout (yes, he has the Space Exploration merit badge) and went to Space Camp four times as a kid and a fifth time as an adult. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University. You can find Tariq at and as the co-host to the This Week In Space podcast with space historian Rod Pyle on the TWiT network. To see his latest project, you can follow Tariq on Twitter @tariqjmalik.