William Shatner confirmed as third passenger on Blue Origin’s next New Shepard launch

Blue Origin is preparing to launch their second crewed New Shepard in less than ten days. After a TMZ report stated he had a ticket, Blue Origin confirms Star Trek actor William Shatner will be on this next flight.

Blue Origin previously announced the first two passengers on the flight; Dr. Chris Boshuizen, co-founder of Planet Labs, and Glen de Vries, co-founder of Medidata. Additionally, Blue Origin announced on social media today that William Shatner and the company’s VP of Mission and Flight Operations Audrey Powers will be joining the flight.

This flight will be the second crewed flight for Blue Origin after Jeff Bezos, his brother Mark Bezos, aviator Wally Funk, and their first paying customer Oliver Daemen flew to space back in July. Funk became the oldest person to fly to space on that first crewed launch, but now Shatner will take that away, beating her by eight years.

Launch follows saftey concern reports

While out of Blue Origin’s 18 New Shepard launches, none have failed, a group essay written by former and current Blue Origin employees claims Bezos’ company has pushed safety to the side in exchange for progress (among other claims of sexism and harassment).

Blue Origin did not publicly respond to the claims of safety concerns in the letter. Their only response attacked the named author’s history with the company, referencing her termination, and said employees have options to report misconduct. Still, the FAA has stated they will look into the matter as the administration takes the safety of their licensed launchers very seriously.

As of right now, William Shatner and his three crewmates are planning on launching on October 12.

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