Blue Origin’s next group of space travelers includes a past customer and the first Mexican-born woman to visit the final frontier.
The NS-21 mission is scheduled to fly from Blue Origin’s launch site one near Van Horn, Texas, on Friday morning (May 20). If all goes according to plan, the company’s New Shepard vehicle will carry six people on a short trip into suborbital space.
As is typical of past missions, most of the people on board are wealthy individuals who have paid for their seats. One notable exception is a participant in the citizen astronaut program sponsored by the nonprofit Space For Humanity, which flies people into space for free after an application process.
Blue Origin was established by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who flew into space himself aboard New Shepard’s debut manned mission on July 20, 2021. NS-21 will be Blue Origin’s fifth manned mission and the mission number 21 for New Shepard overall, crewed or bareboat.
Here is information on the six passengers who will fly on NS-21 this Friday.
Evan Dick previously flew into space aboard the NS-19 mission on December 11, 2021, and will be the first person to launch twice aboard a Blue Origin spacecraft. He is a Managing Member of Dick Holdings, LLC and previously served as Senior Vice President of DE Shaw and Managing Director of Highbridge Capital Management. He lists himself as a pilot, engineer, and investor. His charitable work includes contributions to the Darwin Foundation, Population Relief International Corp. and Starfighters Aerospace, either through charity or as a volunteer, according to Blue Origin’s NS-21 mission announcement.
Katya Echazarreta’s seat was sponsored by the non-profit organization Space for Humanity. Born in Guadalajara, she will become the first person born in Mexico to visit space. Echazarreta co-hosts the YouTube series “Netflix IRL” and “Electric Kat” on the CBS show “Mission Unstoppable.” Before that, she worked at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California on space missions including the Perseverance Mars rover and Europa Clipper. Echazarreta is excited to represent women and minorities interested in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), according to Blue Origin.
Hamish Harding is a business jet pilot and president of the business jet brokerage firm Action Aviation. In 2019, he and retired NASA astronaut Terry Virts set a world record for aircraft flying over the North and South Poles. His other adventurous activities include visiting the South Pole twice and diving to 36,000 feet (nearly 10,100 meters) in a submarine in 2021.
Victor Correa Spain
Victor Correa Hespanha, 28, had his seat sponsored by the Crypto Space Agency, and identifies himself as the world’s first cryptonaut. He is a production civil engineer from the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais and will become the second Brazilian to fly into space, according to Blue Origin.
Jaison Robinson was a finalist on the television show “Survivor: Samoa” in 2009. He later founded the commercial real estate company JJM Investments and co-founded Dream Variations Ventures with his wife, Jamie. His adventure activities include skydiving, scuba diving, breaking the sound barrier in a Mig-29 jet, playing water polo at Stanford University and Eagle Scouting, according to Blue Origin.
Victor Vescovo is a co-founder of private equity investment firm Insight Equity and a retired U.S. Navy reservist and intelligence officer. His adventurous activities include completing an “Explorer’s Grand Slam,” meaning he skied on the North and South Poles and scaled the highest mountains on all seven continents of the world, including Everest. Vescovo is also a commercially rated multi-engine airplane and helicopter pilot, as well as a certified submersible test pilot. Blue Origin says that he has visited Challenger Deep (the deepest point in the ocean) a dozen times.