Blue Origin announces crew of its next New Shepard launch

Flight includes eldest daughter of Alan Shepard, first American to fly to space in 1961

US aerospace manufacturer and spaceflight services firm Blue Origin announced Tuesday the members of crew of its next New Shepard launch.

Its vertical takeoff and landing suborbital vehicle New Shephard’s 19th mission will be the first to carry six astronauts to space, the company said in a statement.

The upcoming NS-19 flight on Dec. 9 will include former professional football player and Good Morning America co-anchor Michael Strahan, and Laura Shepard Churchley, the eldest daughter of Alan Shepard who was the first American to fly to space in 1961 as part of NASA’s Project Mercury.

The other four crew members are paying customers, which include space industry executive and philanthropist Dylan Taylor, investor Evan Dick,Bess Ventures founder Lane Bess, and Cameron Bess.

Lane and Cameron Bess will become the first parent-child pair to fly in space, the statement said.

This will be New Shepard’s third human flight this year, the sixth for the program in 2021, and the 19th in its history, it added.

Its liftoff is scheduled for 9.00 am CST from Launch Site One in West Texas.


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