A month in the past, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos stated that he would be the first billionaire to fly to area on the July 20 flight. At this time, he introduced by way of Instagram that the fourth passenger will likely be Wally Funk, a participant of the Mercury 13 program.
Wally Funk (82 years previous) will change into the oldest particular person of the flight organized by Bezos’ area tourism firm Blue Origin. Nonetheless, Funk was the primary feminine Federal Aviation Administration inspector and first feminine Nationwide Transportation Security Board air security investigator.
“In 1961, Wally Funk was on the prime of her class as a part of the ‘Mercury 13’ Girl in House Program. Regardless of finishing their coaching, this system was cancelled, and not one of the 13 flew,” Bezos defined.
Jeff Bezos, Wally Funk and …
Within the video, Bezos asks Funk what her first phrases will likely be after touching again down on earth. “I’ll say, ‘Honey, that’s the perfect factor that’s ever occurred to me’ and provide you with a hug!” Funk responds.
Truly, Funk has managed to rack up 19,600 flying hours.
“The whole lot that the FAA has, I’ve bought the license for,” she stated. “And I can outrun you.” Funk additionally recalled her time within the Mercury 13 program, which was privately funded and separate from NASA’s efforts to recruit the primary US astronauts.
“They informed me that I had achieved higher and accomplished the work quicker than any of the fellows,” she stated. “So I bought a maintain of NASA 4 occasions. I stated, ‘I need to change into an astronaut,’ however no one would take me.”
“I didn’t suppose that I’d ever get to go up,” she added. “They stated, ‘Wally, you’re a woman! You may’t try this!’ I stated, ‘guess what? Doesn’t matter what you might be. You may nonetheless do it if you wish to do it. And I love to do issues that no one has ever achieved.’”
“It’s an journey. It’s a giant deal for me.”
As for the remainder of two passengers, Wally and Jeff will fly to area with Mark, Bezos’ brother and an unidentified one who paid $28 million at public sale.
“Ever since I used to be 5 years previous, I’ve dreamed of touring to area,” Bezos stated. “On July twentieth, I’ll take that journey with my brother. The best journey, with my greatest buddy.” He additionally added that he had at all times dreamed about this.
By the best way, Elon Musk, founder and CEO of SpaceX, and Richard Branson, founding father of Virgin Galactic, have but to experience with their firms to area.
As a reminder, there are nonetheless two seats ready for passengers.