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On a sadder note: A tale of two terrorists – one from the present and one from the past

We give our condolences to those who have suffered during the Islamic State-inspired terrorist outrage in London during March. Worryingly, it showed that a religious or sectarian terrorist does not need a Kalashnikov or suicide bomb to kill the innocent …

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On a sadder note: Apollo 13 movie actor Bill Paxton dies from operation complications

The film actor Bill Paxton has died following complications after an operation. He was 61 years old. Paxton is best known by space aficionados for his role in the science fiction action film Aliens (1986) and starring as astronaut Fred …

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Ren Xinmin – Chinese rocket and satellite designer passes away at 101

Chinese rocket and satellite designer Ren Xinmin has passed away at the age of 101. While Qian Xuesen is regarded as founder of the Chinese space programme, with benign support of Chairman Mao and Chinese Premier Chou Enlai, one of …

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On a sadder note: “Battlestar Galactica” actor Richard Hatch passes away

US actor Richard Hatch has died at the age of 71 following a battle with pancreatic cancer. Hatch played the space fighter pilot, Captain Apollo in the original 1978-79 science fiction series Battlestar Galactica, a story about a space …

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Syncom designer Harold Rosen passes away

While Arthur C. Clarke came up with the theory of using satellites for communications in a geosynchronous/geostationary position in 1945, actually it was spacecraft designer Harold Rosen who made it a practical reality. As such it is sad to report …

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On a sadder note: Star Wars “Princess Leia” actress Carrie Fisher dies – followed by her mother Debbie Reynolds (Updated)

By the time the much loved 53-year-old singer and songwriter, George Michael, had expired on Christmas day, there had already been much comment on the apparently high number of stars and celebrities who had died during the year. However, there …

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On a sadder note: God Speed John Glenn…veteran astronaut passes away

On 8 December 2016, NASA and the rest of the USA was mourning the death of one of its astronaut heros – John Glenn – a US Marine fighter pilot of World War II and the Korean War – and …

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On a sadder note: Space writer Jos Heyman passes away as does Russian space expert Oleg Sokolov

After a long illness, Jos Heyman, died on 30th September, 2016. The well known space writer who was born in the Netherlands in 1944, was based in Perth, Western Australia for much of his life. Heyman was an accountant by …

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On a sadder note: Comedy actor Gene Wilder passes away

While the 1971 film adaption of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory did not have Willy Wonka, Charlie Bucket and his Grandfather being blasted into space as happened at the end of the book (regretfully the film sequel of …

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On a sadder note: We say goodbye to Shuttle launch director Gene Thomas and to comedy writing genius Caroline Aherne

Former Space Shuttle launch director, Gene Thomas, passed away as an octogenarian in June. Thomas was probably the most unfortunate of NASA launch directors as it was he who was in charge of the Challenger STS-51L launch which was destroyed …

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On a sadder note: Star of the Orient Burt Kwouk passes away

Veteran film actor Burt Kwouk has passed away at the age of 85. Kwouk, as a British based man of Chinese origin (he was raised in Shanghai but he was actually born in Cheshire), cornered the market for “oriental” roles …

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On a sadder note: Blake’s 7 actor Gareth Thomas passes away…as does pop star Prince, comedienne Victoria Wood and James Bond director Guy Hamilton

Television science fiction aficionado’s will be mourning the death of actor Gareth Thomas who played rebel ringleader Roj Blake in the Terry Nation science fiction television series Blake’s 7. The RADA (Royal Academy of Dramatic Art)-trained Thomas, who died at …

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On a sadder note: Comedian and comedy actor Ronnie Corbett passes away

The diminutive Scottish-born comedian and comedy actor, Ronnie Corbett, has passed away at the age of 85. Rocket aficionados will note that he appeared in the 1957 comedy in the film Rockets Galore, a sort of successor to the …

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On a sadder note: BBC Apollo TV coverage anchorman Cliff Michelmore passes away

Veteran BBC broadcaster, Cliff Michelmore has passed away at the age of 96. After serving in the RAF during World War II, Michelmore joined British Forces radio. He subsequently joined the BBC and rose to stardom presenting the radio show …

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On a sadder note: Silvia Anderson Thunderbirds TV show co-creator and voice of Lady Penelope is dead

Sylvia Anderson, co-creator with her then husband Gerry Anderson of the futuristic puppet adventure series Thunderbirds, and voice of its Lady Penelope character as passed away at the age of 88. During the 1960s and 1970s, the creative team of …

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On a sadder note: James Bond set designer Ken Adam passes away

The famous film set designer, Sir Ken Adam, whose futuristic designs inspired both modern day architects and even US Presidents, has died at the age of 95. Ken Adam, originally Klaus Hugo Adam,  fled Nazi Germany as a Jewish refugee …

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Moon landing conspiracy theorists are likely to have self-inflicted love bites – or self-inflicted loathing

Research has found that conspiracy theorists who believe that that the Apollo moon landings of the late 1960s and early 1970s were fakes are more likely to be “narcissists” than other individuals. The online research conducted by the University of …

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On a sadder note: Britain’s leading navy test pilot and rocket plane test flier Eric “Winkle” Brown passes away

During February the death of Eric “Winkle” Brown, age 97, was announced. Having briefly served in the Royal Air Force, Brown had transferred to the Senior Service to become the leading test pilot in the Royal Navy. “Winkle” Brown, whose …

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On a sadder note: Moonwalking astronaut Ed Mitchell passes away

Apollo 14 astronaut and moon walker, Edgar Mitchell has passed away at the age of 85.  Mitchell accompanied Apollo 14 mission commander and ex-Mercury astronaut Alan Shepard to the Fra Mauro region on the surface of the moon in February …

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On a sadder note: Starman chameleon pop-artist David Bowie passes away as does actor Alan Rickman and UK rocket scientist John Scott-Scott

While many pop and rock stars are capable having a few “hit” records while also having a fashion style for their fans to follow, true music superstars are the ones who have longevity and inventiveness to come up with hits …

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