Alan Shepard’s Daughter Will be Flying on the Next New Shepard Flight – Universe Today



Jeff Bezos has hit a specific stride currently with Blue Origin, the business house firm he based in 2000 in the hopes of “building a road to space.” For the sake of fostering curiosity in the house tourism business, testing their reusable launch car, and rising his firm’s model, he’s conducting recurring launches with the New Shepard that includes excessive-profile clientele. At the identical time, he goals to make every new launch a document-setting occasion.
On Nov. 23rd, Blue Origin introduced the names of the six individuals who would fly aboard the New Shepard launch car on its nineteenth flight (NS-19), scheduled for Dec. ninth. Among them is Laura Shepard Churchley, the eldest daughter of astronaut Alan Shepard, the first American astronaut to go to house, the fifth man to stroll on the Moon, and for whom the New Shepard launch car is known as.

In addition to being the first American astronaut to fly to house as a part of the Mercury Program in 1961, he was additionally the fifth man to stroll on the Moon as a part of the Apollo 14 mission (1971), the place he famously performed a spherical of golf! Alan Shepard died in 1998 on account of problems attributable to power lymphocytic leukemia. He was 74 years previous and was survived by three daughters: Laura, Julie, and Alice.

Along along with her two sisters, Julie has spent most of her life selling house exploration and her father’s accomplishments. Since their father’s passing in 1998, they’ve continued to advertise his legacy and encourage folks to hunt careers in house. Julie presently serves as Chair of the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation Board of Trustees, which raises funds and mentoring for school college students and students in search of careers in house-associated analysis and STEM.
Churchley will be joined by Good Morning America co-anchor Michael Strahan, who was additionally personally invited by Bezos. The remaining 4 paying clients embrace Voyager Space Holdings Chairman and CEO Dylan Taylor, investor Evan Dick, cloud-based mostly web safety methods developer Lane Bess, and his son Cameron Bess. These final two friends signify the newest document-breaking feat, as Lane and Cameron will be the first dad or mum-youngster pair to fly to house.
Julie appeared on Good Morning America yesterday and spoke to fellow-traveler Strahan about the upcoming launch and what she expects of it:
“I’m excited to be kind of following in my father’s footsteps, for starters. And I’m excited just to go up higher into space to see what it all looks like. I’ve been looking at stars with my father together, and now we’re all just going to get really close, and it’s going to be thrilling.”
The New Shepard rocket launching from its facility in West Texas. Image: Blue Origin
Strahan then famous Alan Shepard’s many accomplishments in house and requested what she thought her father’s response would possibly be about the upcoming flight. In response, Laura recounted what Shepard advised his daughters earlier than he went to house for the first time, many years in the past:
“Well, first-off, I would have to tell him what I was going to be doing. And I would let him know [the same way] he let us known when he was going up first in 1961. I would say that ‘Blue Origin [is] going to put me in a spacecraft, and they’re going to put the spacecraft on top of a rocket. They’re going to blast me up into space and I will come back to Earth safely.’ That’s exactly what daddy said to us. So he would be sitting there, on the sofa, listening to me. He would stand up, come over to me, give me a big hug, and a kiss. And he would say ‘Go for it, Laura! Have a great ride!’”
Strahan is a Super Bowl Champion, a two-time Emmy award winner, and Peabody award-profitable journalist. He additionally serves as an analyst for “Fox NFL Sunday” and headlines the Thursday Night Football Pregame Show. Strahan additionally runs a expertise company (SMAC Entertainment) and is an lively supporter of charitable organizations, like the USO, HELP USA, and Merging Vets and Players. As an invited visitor on this flight, he’ll obtain a stipend to donate to The Boys & Girls Club.
Taylor is a effectively-identified house business entrepreneur advert the Chairman and CEO of Voyager Space Holdings, a business house agency headquartered in Denver. He’s additionally the founding father of Space for Humanity, a worldwide nonprofit in search of to “democratize access to space” (additionally partnered with Virgin Galactic) and a co-founding patron of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, a personal business group that seeks to advertise the growth of business human spaceflight.
The inside of the New Shepard capsule. Credit: Blue Origin
Dick is an engineer, investor, and a charitable supporter of the Darwin Foundation, which helps conservation efforts in the Galapagos Islands, and the Population Relief International Corp, which gives free contraceptives and entry to reproductive providers. Dick can be an ATP-rated pilot and volunteer for Starfighters Aerospace, which maintains the solely fleet of flight-prepared F-104 supersonic plane at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.
Bess is greatest identified for co-founding Zscaler and Palo Alto Networks (two of the largest cybersecurity corporations at the moment), a Trustee at Carnegie Mellon University, and the founding father of Bess Ventures and Advisory, which helps corporations providing innovation and disruption applied sciences. Cameron, Bess’ son, is a content material creator with a background in pc science, recreation design, and software program growth that helps marginalized communities signify themselves and encourage others.
As with earlier flights, the NS-19 flight can even carry particular cargo consisting of postcards submitted from every astronaut on behalf of Blue Origin’s basis, Club for the Future. This group goals to assist future generations pursue careers in STEM and assist construct humanity’s future in house. Their Postcards to Space program additionally goals to supply college students entry to house utilizing Blue Origin’s launch automobiles.
The launch is presently scheduled for 09:00 AM CST (10:00 AM EST; 07:00 AM PST) and can happen at the firm’s Launch Site One facility in West Texas. This will be New Shepard’s third crewed flight this yr, the sixth launch since flights started earlier this yr, and the 19th flight of the car total. Live protection of the occasion will start 90 minutes earlier than launch on BlueOrigin.com.
Further Reading: Blue Origin
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