MOSCOW (Reuters) - Soviet astronaut Alexey Leonov, 85, the first person to leave a spacecraft in orbit, died in Moscow on Friday, Russian media reported.
The Russian space agency Roskosmos later confirmed on its Twitter account the death of the "11th astronaut," who called him a legend who was the hero of the Soviet Union.
"His name will remain forever in history," the Russian space agency said in a letter to the Leonov family.
"His greatest memory will be our country's future achievements in space travel, for which he has dedicated his heroic life."
Leonov made his first space flight for about 10 minutes during a day-long mission amidst the space race of the 1960s between the United States and the Soviet Union.
Leonov was the commander of the first US-Soviet space mission and was a close friend of Yuri Gagarin, the famous Russian astronaut.
Leonov died after a long battle with an undisclosed disease, Russian media reported. His funeral is scheduled for Tuesday.