A long way from home

October 21, 2012

June 1971, Soyuz 11 undocked from the Salyut 1 orbital space station. Forty seconds later, the three cosmonauts suffered cardiac arrest in the vacuum as the pressure in the damaged capsule mirrored that of the empty space outside its confines. The ground crew waiting in Kazakhstan knew nothing until they opened the capsule to hail their returning heroes and found three silent unmoving men. Patsayev sustained bruising to his hand in an attempt to manually shut the valves to save himself and his crew members. Far from home, in a lonely place.

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