Buzz Aldrin receives first COVID-19 shot, urges Americans to vaccinate 'as soon as possible'

Aldrin said the shot was 'painless'

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin received the first shot of the coronavirus vaccine just days before his 91st birthday, and he urged more Americans to follow his example.

Aldrin thanked the many people involved with the development and distribution of the vaccine.

"I urge everyone to sign up for a vaccination as soon as possible when eligible to do, so that life can return to normal soon," Aldrin tweeted.

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Aldrin received the shot in Florida, where he lives in his retirement, according to Florida Today. Aldrin served as a member of the Apollo 11 mission, during which he became one of the first humans to land and walk on the surface of the moon. 

As a member of the Apollo mission in 1969, Aldrin was no stranger to vaccinations: the astronauts for the mission took a number of vaccines for diphtheria, typhoid, tetanus, influenza, mumps, poliomyelitis, rubella, rubeola, smallpox and yellow fever, according to NASA

"Getting the COVID-19 vaccine was painless," Aldrin said of the experience this week.

His tweet included a picture of himself sporting an Apollo 11 shirt while he received the shot.

"As we move forward into 2021, I want to send a message of hope and inspiration to the American people and to all the world -- help is here," Buzz Aldrin said in a press release.

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"I am proud to step forward to take this safe coronavirus vaccine that is provided -- in record time -- for all the world; this effort truly is a miracle."