MIAMI (CBSMiami/CNN) — Jeff Bezos, who was Valedictorian of Miami Palmetto Senior High, told the audience at his graduation ceremony he dreamed of the day when mankind would colonize space.
Well, that dream is another step closer to becoming reality as he announced Monday he will be aboard the first crewed flight of the New Shepard, the rocket ship made by his space company, Blue Origins.READ MORE: Dramatic Drop In COVID Patients At South Florida Hospitals
In an Instagram post early Monday, Bezos said he, his brother Mark Bezos, and the winner of an ongoing auction, will be aboard the New Shepard spacecraft when it launches on July 20, just 15 days after he is set to resign as CEO of Amazon.
WATCH: Bezos Announcement
July 20 is the anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
The trip on the six-seater capsule and 59-foot rocket will be brief, about an 11-minute flight that’ll reach more than 60 miles above Earth.
Bezos said in early February that he was stepping down as CEO of Amazon to spend more time, among other things, focused on Blue Origin.READ MORE: Cuban Leader Miguel Diaz Canel Blasts US At UN General Assembly
“To see the Earth from space, it changes you, changes your relationship with this planet. It’s one Earth,” Bezos said in the Instagram post. “I want to go on this flight because it’s a thing I’ve wanted to do all my life. It’s an adventure. It’s a big deal for me.”
The auction for an open seat on New Shepard ends Saturday.
The winning bid right now stands at $2.8 million, with almost 6,000 participants from 143 countries.
The winning bid amount will be donated to Blue Origin’s foundation, Club for the Future, whose mission is to inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM and to help invent the future of life in space.
In addition to New Shepard, Blue Origin is also working to develop a towering rocket called New Glenn, which the company hopes will be used to send US government and commercial satellites to orbit, as well as potentially make trips to deep space.
Blue Origin also hoped to be involved in NASA’s plan to return humans to the moon by 2024, though it was bested by SpaceX for a contract to build the lunar lander that would shuttle astronauts from the moon’s orbit down to the surface. Blue Origin is protesting that contract decision, though NASA has also said that Blue Origin is still eligible to bid to work on future lunar missions.MORE NEWS: Police Respond To 'Active Shooter' Situation At Kroger In Tennessee
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