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First woman to complete Extreme Explorers Trifecta flies on Blue Origin’s space tourist mission

Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin has launched its sixth tourist trip to suborbital space that helped the first woman complete the Explorer’s Extreme Trifecta.

This honor is achieved by reaching the highest point on Earth, going to the deepest corner of the sea and flying into space – Victor Vescovo is the only other person to complete all three.

Vanessa O’Brien, 57, climbed the top of Mount Everest in 2012, and two years later the British-American dove 35,843 feet into the Challenger Deep — the deepest known point of Earth’s seafloor.

Two other crew members also made history after Thursday’s launch. Sara Sabry and Mário Ferreira, who are now the first people of Egyptian and Portuguese descent to go into space.

Clint Kelly III, a former Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) member, Steve Young, the former owner of Florida’s largest communications company and YouTube star Coby Cotton, also joined the epic journey.

The launch was delayed 20 minutes, leaving the crew anxiously waiting in the capsule, but when the clock struck “zero” at 9:57 a.m. ET, a loud roar echoed across the desert as New Shepard fired up its seven engines. “God speed Titanium Feather,” said a Blue Origin commentator, referring to the name the crew gave themselves.

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Vanessa O'Brien is the first woman to complete the Explorer Extreme Trifecta.  She previously climbed the top of Mount Everest in 2012

Vanessa O’Brien is the first woman to complete the Explorer Extreme Trifecta. She previously climbed the top of Mount Everest in 2012

In 2020, the British-American dove 35,843 feet to the Challenger Deep - the deepest known point of Earth's seafloor.  The last part of the trifecta goes to the room she marked off the list

In 2020, the British-American dove 35,843 feet to the Challenger Deep – the deepest known point of Earth’s seafloor. The last part of the trifecta goes to the room she marked off the list

Obrien is the second woman to reach Challenger Deep after astronaut Kathy Sullivan, who was part of O’Brien’s team that ventured into the depths. And Vescovo was the pilot who took her on the mission to reach the deepest point on Earth.

O’Brien grew up in Michigan, USA, and moved to London in 1999. She began a career working in consumer accounts for many major banking firms such as Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Barclays Bank. But when the recession hit in 2010, she changed her mind — quitting her job to embark on a journey to complete the Explorer’s Extreme Trifecta.

The last part of the honor began when the New Shepherd rocket lifted off from Blue Origin’s plant in West Texas.

The rocket hit Max Q, the point at which a spacecraft’s atmospheric flight reaches maximum dynamic pressure, one minute and five seconds after launch, while traveling more than 1,600 miles per hour.

Blue Origin's sixth mission brought (left to right) Clint Kelly III, Sara Sabry, Mário Ferreira, Coby Cotton, Steve Young, and Vanessa O'Brien into suborbital space

Blue Origin’s sixth mission brought (left to right) Clint Kelly III, Sara Sabry, Mário Ferreira, Coby Cotton, Steve Young, and Vanessa O’Brien into suborbital space

And after two minutes and 31 seconds, the glossy white crew pod separated from the rocket and continued on its way into space.

The capsule hovered for about five minutes while 62 miles above the surface, then made a proud journey back to Earth.

Three red and white parachutes fired from the capsule after eight minutes and 30 seconds, helping the craft slide back to the ground for a soft landing in the Texas desert.

The New Shepperd rocket took off at 9:57 a.m. ET, with a delay of 20 minutes

The New Shepperd rocket took off at 9:57 a.m. ET, with a delay of 20 minutes

The crew flew into space and hovered for five minutes before returning to Earth

Blue and white parachutes were released from the capsule to guide it for a soft landing

The crew flew into space and hovered for five minutes before returning to Earth. Blue and white parachutes were released from the capsule to guide it for a soft landing

You can hear the crew yelling ‘we’re not dying’ from inside the capsule, along with others describing how they feel sweaty from the epic adventure.

The journey took only 10 minutes and 27 seconds, but as one Blue Origin commentator said, ‘the experience will last a lifetime.’

Today’s mission also marks the 22nd launch of the New Shepard.

All six members received a special challenge coin shortly after arriving at the training center earlier this morning.

The coin represents connection and achievement of something great and is only awarded to astronauts who have passed the training and are going to fly on a spacecraft.

The New Shepherd's first stage landed safely back on the return platform before the capsule landed (back) in the Texas desert

The New Shepherd’s first stage landed safely back on the return platform before the capsule landed (back) in the Texas desert

You can hear the crew yelling 'we're not dying' from inside the pod, along with others describing how they feel sweaty from the epic adventure

You can hear the crew yelling ‘we’re not dying’ from inside the pod, along with others describing how they feel sweaty from the epic adventure

The team climbed the tower about 30 minutes before launch, each ringing a hanging silver bell before walking through a tunnel on their way to the launch pod, which above says “light this candle.”

And now at 10:09 am ET, the crew has had “one of the most amazing days of their lives.”

Each crew member is now considered an astronaut.

Cotton is known for his YouTube sports channel Dude Perfect with 57 million followers.

The channel came into existence in 2009 when Cotton and his roommates, Garrett Hilbert, Tyler Toney, Cody Jones and his brother, Cory Cotton, began posting comedy videos and trick shots.

Cotton’s chair was sponsored by MoonDAO, which describes itself as “an international collective of people united by the mission to decentralize access to space research and exploration.”

Sabry, 29, is now the first Egyptian to fly to space. Her company Deep Space Initiative is working on increasing accessibility for space research.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the American University in Cairo and a master’s degree in biomedical engineering from the Politecnico di Milano.

And Sabry’s chair is sponsored by Space for Humanity.

The journey took only 10 minutes and 27 seconds, but as one Blue Origin commentator said, 'the experience will last a lifetime.'  Today's mission also marks the 22nd launch of the New Shepard

The journey took only 10 minutes and 27 seconds, but as one Blue Origin commentator said, ‘the experience will last a lifetime.’ Today’s mission also marks the 22nd launch of the New Shepard

This nonprofit “serves targeted leaders through a sponsored spaceflight experience to create a profound shift in perspective so that every civilian astronaut returns with a greater perspective to address our most intractable challenges and their solutions.”

Ferreira, 54, the first person from Portugal to fly into space, is an entrepreneur, investor and president of Pluris Investments Group.

According to space.comFerreira spends his free time diving, running and participating in a car rally known as the Dakar.

Sara Sabry

Coby Cotton

Sabry is now the first person of Portuguese descent, while Cotton could be considered the first YouTube star to visit the last frontier

Steve Young

Vanessa O'Brien

Young told DailyMail.com that he had paid for his seat aboard the rocket. He is a businessman living in Florida. O’Brien made history on Thursday by becoming the first woman to complete the Explorer Extreme Trifecta

O’Brien, 57, also made history on Thursday, as the first woman to complete the Explorers’ extreme trifecta of reaching space.

She climbed Earth’s highest peak, Mount Everest, and ventured to the deepest point on our planet – the Challenger Deep. And now the final part of the trifecta is her journey into space.

Kelly has been with DARPA since 1984 and is credited with developing early technology that spawned the era of autonomous vehicles.

Kelly (left) is credited with pioneering the technology used in autonomous vehicles.  Ferreira is the first person from Portugal to fly into space, is an entrepreneur, investor and president of Pluris Investments Group

Kelly (left) is credited with pioneering the technology used in autonomous vehicles. Ferreira is the first person from Portugal to fly into space, is an entrepreneur, investor and president of Pluris Investments Group

And Young, 59, who is a paying customer, is known for owning Florida’s largest telecommunications contractor, Young’s Communications, or Y-com.

Young told DailyMail.com that he sold the company when it was generating $100 million annually and it was acquired by Grain Management, which only buys companies valued between $20 million and $150 million.

Young, who lives in Indialantic, also owns Pineapples, a rooftop restaurant, music venue and bar in Eau Gallie, Florida — which he opened shortly before selling Y-com.

NS-22 brings the total number of people flown to space by Blue Origin to 31 since the maiden flight in July 2021 that brought Bezos himself to the final frontier.

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