Vladimir Komarov is considered as the first man to die during a space mission. He was one of the most prominent test pilots that Russia has ever produced. Due to the unique set of capabilities, Vladimir Komarov got lucky enough to become a cosmonaut and an aerospace engineer.
Vladimir Komarov became a cosmonaut back in 1960. Before that, he was promoted to the position of engineer captain. Along with this promotion, Vladimir Komarov was invited to take part in a selection process for cosmonaut candidates. Along with him, 3,000 other pilots took part in this interview. However, only 20 cosmonauts were selected at the end and Vladimir Komarov became lucky enough to get into that group. He was placed on his new assignment on 13th of March, 1960.
The first space mission of Vladimir Komarov took place back in October, 1964. He was provided with the responsibility to command the Voskhod 1 spaceflight. Another crew member joined with Vladimir Komarov for this journey. Later he was selected as the solo pilot of the spaceflight Soyuz 1. At that time, he was considered as the first cosmonaut to fly twice in space. Soyuz 1 was the first ever human occupied test flight. Unfortunately, the mission on Soyuz ended up in tragedy. In fact, a failure in the parachute caused the capsule to crash back into the ground on 24th of April 1967. As a result, Vladimir Komarov became the first person to die while engaged in a space mission.
As mentioned earlier, Vladimir Komarov was one of the highly qualified and experienced candidates to get into the first team of cosmonauts in the country. This squad was established back in 1960 and he was a prominent figure on it since then. There were two instances where Vladimir Komarov was found medically unfit to work on space missions. However, the superior skills and perseverance of Vladimir Komarov helped him to achieve his target of becoming a cosmonaut. He also contributed a lot towards the design of space vehicles. The other significant contributions of him include strengthening public relations and cosmonaut training.
Vladimir Komarov wanted his funeral to be an open casket one. The funeral was arranged as per his preferences. The fellow cosmonauts were moved by the death of Vladimir Komarov and one of them wrote an article, which got published in Pravda. As per him, it has not been an easy thing for cosmonauts like Vladimir Komarov to work on the space missions. They had to tread through unknown paths and these paths have not been straight. Due to the sharp turns, they had to face a variety of challenges as well. However, Vladimir Komarov was able to overcome all those challenges. The body os Vladimir Komarov was cremated and the ashes were placed inside a tomb located in the Kremlin wall.
People in Russia still honor Vladimir Komarov for all the contributions that he has done towards the development of space technology in the country.