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[i]Theodore C. Sorensen, the studious, star-struck aide and alter ego to President John F. Kennedy whose crisp, poetic turns of phrase helped idealize and immortalize a tragically brief administration, died Sunday. He was 82.
He died at noon at a New York hospital from complications of a stroke, his widow, Gillian Sorensen, said.
...In April 1961, weeks into the Kennedy presidency, the Soviet Union launched the first man into orbit. Less than a month later, Alan Shepard became the first American in space with a 15-minute suborbital flight. The idea of a moon landing "caught my attention, and I knew it would catch Kennedy's," Sorensen recalled. "This is the man who talked about new frontiers. That's what I took to him."
Shortly after Shepard's landmark flight, Kennedy said: "I believe this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before the decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to Earth." U.S. astronauts met that deadline in July 1969.[/i]
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