Michael Strahan can’t wait to return to space.
The former NFL soccer participant and “Good Morning America” co-anchor launched into space on Blue Origin’s suborbital New Shepard rocket Saturday morning (Dec. 11) and apparently loved each second, judging from the smile on his face after touchdown.
“I want to go back,” Strahan advised Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos after exiting the New Shepard spacecraft at its touchdown website close to the corporate’s Launch Site One exterior of Van Horn, Texas.
Strahan, 50, and 5 different passengers launched on Blue Origin’s NS-19 mission aboard New Shepard Saturday, skilled a couple of minutes of weightlessness and breathtaking views of Earth from 65 miles up earlier than descending again to Earth underneath their capsule’s parachutes.
“Touchdown has a new meaning now!!!” Strahan, a former NY Giants defensive finish, wrote on Twitter after the flight. “Wow … that was amazing!”
Video recap: Watch Blue Origin launch Michael Strahan to space
Joining Strahan on the flight have been Laura Shepard Churchley, the eldest daughter of the late Alan Shepard, the primary American to fly in space and the namesake of Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket. Four paying passengers rounded out the crew.
The stay Blue Origin broadcast confirmed Strahan, a former NY Giants defensive finish, giving an enthusiastic thumbs-up from the window whereas ready for restoration crews, together with a big group of well-wishers and movie crews, to method the spacecraft within the desert close to Van Horn. Strahan’s enthusiasm continued even after rising from the New Shepard capsule RSS First Step that carries Blue Origin passengers to space.
“It was surreal … it was unbelievable. It’s really hard to describe it,” Strahan said in a video with this Twitter post. He additionally had enthusiastic feedback for onlookers moments after touchdown.
More: Blue Origin’s launch with GMA anchor Michael Strahan defined
TOUCHDOWN has a brand new which means now!!! WOW…. that was superb!!! 🚀🚀 @blueorigin @SMAC pic.twitter.com/xz54JT49f3December 11, 2021
“OK, here’s the thing,” Strahan advised a small group of individuals assembled close to the spacecraft after touchdown, together with Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos.
“The Gs, it’s not a facelift but a face drop,” Strahan continued, talking of the forces of gravity his crew skilled throughout launch and touchdown. “I know what I’m going to look like at 85,” he concluded, joking.
Strahan stated he urged his crewmates to come back again and watch a Blue Origin launch from the bottom, one thing he did earlier this yr when the corporate launched its first crewed New Shepard flight carrying Jeff Bezos, his brother Mark amongst its crew. At the time, Strahan was reporting on the launch for Good Morning America.
Saturday’s launch marked Blue Origin’s third crewed flight. The firm launched “Star Trek” actor William Shatner and three others on New Shepard in October.
But Saturday’s flight marked Blue Origin’s first to hold a full six-person crew (the 2 earlier flights carried solely 4 every), with the space vacationers dubbing themselves “The Original Six.” This moniker is a nod to “The Original Seven” group of Mercury 7 astronauts chosen by NASA in 1959, who have been the company’s first spaceflyers.
Among that NASA group was Alan Shepard, Churchley’s father. She was about 14 when her father turned the primary American to fly into space in 1961.
“He didn’t even get to enjoy it, like I did. He was working,” Churchley, 74, stated to touchdown website onlookers, in the course of the Blue Origin broadcast.
“It was all business,” Bezos, standing close by, stated to Churchley.
“He had to do it himself. I went along for the ride!” Churchley responded, to which Bezos joked, “He wasn’t doing somersaults.”
Churchley and Strahan have been invited visitors of Blue Origin on its third crewed flight, which reached a most altitude of roughly 65.8 miles (106 km) above floor degree in the course of the 10 minute, 13-second flight, based on firm statistics.
The crew had about three minutes of weightlessness on the high of the suborbital parabolic flight, throughout which they exclaimed in regards to the view on the published, earlier than they descended beneath parachutes to the Texas desert.
The different 4 spaceflyers on mission NS-19, who have been paying passengers, have been:
- Dylan Taylor, 51, chairman and CEO of the space exploration agency Voyager Space, founder of the nonprofit Space for Humanity, and co-founding patron of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation.
- Evan Dick, age not disclosed, an engineer and investor who’s a volunteer pilot for Starfighters Aerospace.
- Lane Bess, age not disclosed, principal and founder of a technology-focused enterprise fund known as Bess Ventures and Advisory.
- Cameron Bess, age not disclosed, who’s a baby of Lane. They stream selection content material on Twitch underneath the alias MeepsKitten.
Bezos personally drove some of the crew out to the launch pad in Rivian electrical vehicles and introduced every with their Blue Origin astronaut wings. In a prelaunch video, Taylor stated he anticipated the flight to be the expertise of a lifetime. His crewmates, it appeared, agreed.
“I’m going to do it again,” Lane Bess stated as Bezos gave the entrepreneur and investor his wings. Bezos added that Bess must get again in line to ebook a flight.
Dick was the final to obtain his wings and appeared overjoyed. In Blue Origin video, engineer-turned investor stated he arduous at all times hoped to work in aerospace when he was younger, however by no means managed to do it.
“You made my dream come true,” Dick advised Bezos.
Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or on Facebook.