Buzz Aldrin forced to pull out of Cork visit due to ill health

19 Jun 2017

Buzz Aldrin at a book signing in 2016. Image: Debby Wong/Shutterstock

Legendary astronaut and space enthusiast Dr Buzz Aldrin has been forced to pull out of his speaking gig in Cork next week due to ill health.

Those eager to hear Buzz Aldrin – the second person to ever set foot on the moon – speak at the launch of the International Space University’s (ISU) Space Studies Program (SSP) in Cork on 26 June will be disappointed to hear that he is unable to attend.

It was revealed in March that Aldrin was to deliver the opening address of the 30th edition of the SSP, and conduct the Gerald A Soffen Memorial lecture at the Nexus Hall in Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) the following evening.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the event said that Aldrin was forced to withdraw from the event on “medical advice”.

In communication with ISU president Walter Peeters and CIT president Brendan Murphy, Aldrin expressed his “profound regret” at having to cancel his visit, saying that he was very much looking forward to visiting Ireland.

87-year-old Aldrin tweeted earlier today (19 June) that he was also going to be missing out on an event in Norway, saying he needed “time to refuel my engines in Florida”.

Two months of events planned

The organisers of this year’s SSP are planning to proceed with the lecture on 27 June and are currently working on alternative options, which they said will be announced imminently. They added that all events will continue as planned.

Over a period of two months, the SSP will host a variety of lectures and conferences on everything to do with space. It chose to host in Ireland due to its achievements within the field of spacetech.

The ISU said: “Irish companies and researchers have distinguished themselves in NASA and the European Space Agency programmes by developing (for the latter) innovative maritime services using satellite-derived data in areas as diverse as marine renewables, fisheries protection, aquaculture and tourism.”

Buzz Aldrin at a book signing in 2016. Image: Debby Wong/Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic