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Mercury 13 legend Wally Funk will ride with Jeff Bezos to the edge of space

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Wally Funk in an undated photo provided by Blue Origin

Wally Funk, one of the “Mercury 13” pilots who fought to open NASA’s early astronaut program to women, will ride with Jeff Bezos on his space company’s first crewed mission out of Earth’s atmosphere later this month, the billionaire announced on Instagram Thursday.

Funk brings the crew size for New Shepard’s debut flight carrying humans on July 20th to four, including Bezos, his brother Mark, and a yet-to-be-named passenger who paid $28 million for their trip to space in an auction that closed last month. Bezos’ presence on the first flight is seen as a show of confidence in New Shepard’s safety.

Funk’s inclusion as an “honored…

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