Jeff Bezos Invites 82-Year-Old 'Mercury 13' Woman on Space Flight: 'No One Has Waited Longer'

In the 1960s, Wally Funk was a part of the Mercury 13 program that tested a group of women to see if they were fit to fly. The program was cancelled, and Funk never made it to space — until now. She is set to become the oldest person to make the journey.

“No one has waited longer,” Jeff Bezos said of the 82-year-old woman who was personally invited by the billionaire to accompany him on his passenger flight to space later this month.

Wally Funk is set to become the oldest person to ever make the journey.

But as Bezos noted, it’s one that has been decades in the making. In the 1960s, Funk was a part of the Mercury 13 astronaut program, where women were tested to see if they were fit to fly. 

“Despite completing their training, the program was cancelled, and none of the thirteen flew,” Bezos wrote on Instagram. “It’s time. Welcome to the crew, Wally. We’re excited to have you fly with us on July 20th as our honored guest.”

In the Instagram video, Bezos personally broke the news to her. 

“I didn’t think I’d ever get to go up,” Funk said.

Funk says she expects to “love every second” of that journey. 

Meanwhile, it’s a battle of the billionaires as Bezos and British entrepreneur, Richard Branson, duke it out to see who can blast off into space first. Branson announced Friday he’s lifting off on July 11, meaning he will beat his rival’s flight by nine days. 

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