The latest Blue Origin flight for New Shepard made history not just for Jeff Bezos’ rocket company, but also for “Good Morning America” (“GMA”) co-host Michael Strahan.
AfroTech previously shared that the launch was the first time a Blue Origin flight was set to operate at full capacity with six passengers. After the launch on Dec. 11 — delayed by two days due to inclement weather — Strahan became the first American journalist to travel to space, according to CNN.
Blue Origin Flight
After accepting the invitation to space, Strahan became one of Blue Origin’s honorary guests — the other being Laura Shepard Churchley, daughter of the late astronaut Alan Shepard, the first American to fly to space.
The historic flight’s crew also included Voyager Space Holdings CEO Dylan Taylor, investor Evan Dick, Bess Ventures founder Lane Bess, and his son Cameron Bess.
According to NBC News, the launch was a 10-minute flight that reached an altitude of about 66 miles (106 kilometers).
Michael Strahan's Journey
“We walk across this bridge to get to the #NewShepard capsule!” Strahan shared via Twitter prior to the launch. “‘Light this candle’… was said by Alan Shepard before liftoff.”
He continued: “Pretty SURREAL! The bell comes from a naval tradition of ringing a bell to announce the arrival or departure.”
The bell comes from a naval tradition of ringing a bell to announce the arrival or departure. pic.twitter.com/e7nHc9bcvo
— Michael Strahan (@michaelstrahan) December 11, 2021
Each crew member was able to bring a 3-pound weight limit of items on board. Strahan brought an array of sentimental possessions including all 12 shell casings from the 12-gun salute performed at his father Gene Strahan‘s funeral, his Super Bowl XLII Ring, and Pro Football Hall of Fame Ring of Excellence.
Michael Strahan's Thoughts On Space Tourism
Prior to the launch, Strahan made it clear of his excitement for space during his initial announcement.
“Blue Origin, they approached me and they asked if I wanted to be a crew member and without hesitation, I said ‘Yes’,” Strahan shared with his “GMA” co-hosts George Stephanopoulos and Robin Roberts.
He also shared that he believes space tourism has a promising future ahead through “technological breakthroughs and also innovations to us here on Earth.”
Well, now you’re a part of that promising future. Congratulations, Michael!