Move over, William Shatner – It travels from this world in Michael Strahan’s queue.
The former NFL footballer announced on Tuesday morning’s show that “Good Morning America” host Blue Origin will fly into space. They will be taking off on the D9 with five other passenger crews.
“Blue Source – he contacted me and asked if I wanted to be a staff member and I said ‘yes’ without hesitation,” Strahan told his “GMA” co-hosts Robin Roberts and George Stephanopoulos. “I want to go into space!”
The 50-year-old TV personality includes the first human space launch this summer from Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin and has been “fascinated” with human space travel ever since, he said. His trip is the third aerospace flight of the aerospace company.
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“It will take some time, but I believe it will bring us a lot of technological advances and innovations on Earth … and I want to be a part of it,” he said.
Strahan is already preparing for his trip, fitting into his space suit and checking out his plane seat. Next, he goes to West Texas for further training.
Joining him on the flight include Laura Shepard Churchley, daughter of astronaut Alan Shepard; Dylan Taylor, philanthropist of the space industry; Investor Evan Dick; And Lane Bess and Cameron Bess, their first parent and child pair. While Churchley and Strahan were honorable guests on the flight, the other four crew members were paying customers.
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Strahan is not the first familiar face to go into space. Best known for his role in the original “Star Trek” series and his first six films in the “Star Trek” franchise, Shatner exploded into space with Blue Origin in October.
The 90-year-old actor is the oldest person to visit the space and he described the emotional experience after his return to Earth.
“Everyone in the world has to do it. Everyone in the world needs to see it,” Shatner said. “It was unbelievable. The little things – weightless – but to see the blue (sky) whip and now you’re looking black. And then it disappeared. It was very moving. This experience did something. Unbelievable.”
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Blue Origin’s first human spaceflight was launched on July 20, when Bezos, Bezos’ brother Mark, Mercury 13 Aviator Wally Funk (formerly the oldest man in space) and 18-year-old student Oliver Damen (son of a hedge fund manager) were in orbit.
Within minutes, the group exploded from the West Texas desert, reaching space and returning to Earth in a soft parachute landing.
“The best day ever,” Jeff Bezos said after the touchdown, greeting Blue Origin employees and others on the company’s campus with a sea of cheering.
This is the 16th flight to New Shepard, a 60-foot rocket designed primarily for space travel, but the first to feature people. Bezos said the sale of private seats on its flights is approaching $ 100 million.
Contributors: Hannah Yasharoff, Jenna Ryu