British astronomer Patrick Moore, who hosted the BBC program The Sky at Night, died Sunday at his home after battling an infection. He was 89.
"After a short spell in hospital last week, it was determined that no further treatment would benefit him, and it was his wish to spend his last days in his own home, Farthings, where he today passed on, in the company of close friends and carers and his cat Ptolemy," said a statement released by Moore's friends announcing his death.
Moore was born in Middlesex, England and suffered from heart problems as a child, according to the New York Times. During World War II, he joined a bomber squad after lying about his age. He was knighted in 2001.
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Throughout his career as an astronomer, Moore published more than 70 science fiction books and books on astronomy. One of those was a 2008 collaboration with Queen guitarist and fellow astronomer Brian May, titled Bang! The Complete History of the Universe. He was also a former president of the British Astronomical Association, as well as a co-founder and former president of the Society for Popular Astronomy.
Moore's interview subjects on The Sky at Night included Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. He often worked conservative political commentary into his broadcasts, speaking out against Britain integrating into the European Union and once referring to immigrants as "parasites," according to the Times. The show, which aired its latest episode Sunday, is the longest-running television program with the same presenter in television history.
Moore never married and had no children.
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