Famous Bipolar People


Buzz Aldrin, was the famous astronaut who piloted the first ever successful landing on the moon, Lunar Module on the Apollo 11. He was born Edwin Eugene Aldrin, Sr. on January 20, 1930 in Glen Ridge, New Jersey. He was the second person to set foot on the moon.

Aldrin attended West Point, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering. Upon his commissioning as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force, he served as a jet fighter pilot during the Korean War. He was assigned to Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada as aerial gunnery instructor. He furthered his education by obtaining a doctorate degree in Astronautics from MIT. Aldrin was stationed at the Gemini Target Office of the Air Force Space System Division in Los Angeles after his graduation from MIT. He was later transferred to the U.S. Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base.


At the Air Force Base, after the death of the Gemini 9 original crew, Aldrin was selected into the third group of NASA astronauts. Aldrin was elevated to back-up crew for the mission, and then confirmed a pilot of Gemini 12. Upon landing on the moon, Aldrin sent a radio message to earth and also took communion. Aldrin proposed that, there exists a special spacecraft trajectory, by which if a spacecraft travels, would pass close by the Earth and Mars regularly. This in now known as the Aldrin cycler which is an example of a Mars Cycler. He also helped develop the idea of underwater training for astronauts to give them a better preparation for the space walk and for maintaining the spacecraft.


Aldrin suffered from bipolar disorder, resulting in bouts of depression. His books, Magnificent Desolation and Return to earth all provide accounts of his struggles with depression and alcoholism during the years after retirement. He reiterated that the cause as not being prepared for the fame that followed landing on the moon. He could not handle it. He spent time in and out of treatment centers. Aldrin admits that his current wife helped him out of the addiction. He has been sober for 29 years now.

Aldrin had been married thrice. His first marriage was with Joan Archer. The couple had three children before the marriage broke down. His second marriage was to Beverly Zile, which also ended up in a divorce. Aldrin is currently married to Lois Driggs Cannon, who helped him in his battles with alcoholism and depression.


Aldrin retired from active NASA duty in 1972 after 21 years of dedicated service. He however continued to encourage and promote exploration of space. He later returned to the Air Force in a managerial position. Aldrin criticized NASA in an article published in the New York Times for not striving for new victories, but rather doing the same things they used to do. He also criticized the design of the spacecraft that, it had no cargo carrying capability and can take only four astronauts at a time.


Aldrin is a Presbyterian Christian and a strong supporter of the Republican Party.