Septuagenarian Aviator Awaits Her Trip Into Space | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 07.20.15

Airborne 07.21.15

Airborne 07.22.15

Airborne 07.23.15

Airborne 07.24.15

Airborne Hi-Def On YouTube

Airborne 07.20.15

Airborne 07.21.15

Airborne 07.22.15

Airborne 07.23.15

Airborne 07.24.15

EAA/ANN AirVenture Innovation Preview

AIP-#1 Vimeo

AIP-#2 Vimeo

AIP-Part 1 YouTube

AIP-Part 2 YouTube

Sun, Apr 29, 2012

Septuagenarian Aviator Awaits Her Trip Into Space

Original 'Mercury 13' Member Ready To Go

For the 500 or so well-heeled individuals who've signed up with Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic to make the brief trip into space, there is probably no more qualified person on the list than Wally Funk of Roanoke, Texas. At 73, she has been flying since the age of 16 and has amassed 18,600 flight hours and has trained 2,000 pilots. She was a champion air racer and has made three historic firsts; she was the first civilian flight instructor at Fort Sill, OK; the first FAA inspector; and the first NTSB air crash investigator.

Time Magazine reports that she almost got to add astronaut to the list in the 1960's as she trained in a private program for women with NASA's support similar to the physical and mental tests the male Mercury astronauts endured. Of the 25 women invited, 19 enrolled and 13 graduated. Then at 21, Funk was the youngest of the group. The women called themselves the Mercury 13. Even with NASA's support the country wasn't quite ready for women in space. Funk says "It was the era when women were in the kitchen. Space travel was the old-boy network."

Now through the courtesy of Virgin Galactic, she will have the opportunity to do something that eluded her 40 years ago. The space flight will take passengers to a point 60 miles above the earth where they will experience five minutes of weightlessness with amazing views of the planet, and then return for landing in New Mexico. The first flights are expected to begin in 2013. Until then Ms. Funk is staying busy training pilots, advising aerospace companies, and working the lecture circuit.

FMI: www.virgingalactic.com

Advertisement

More News

Airborne At OSH15 Day 1 Redux: Redbird Sidekick, Pelton Upbeat, Hartzell Re-Prop

Also: Aviation Gateway Park, New Vintage Plaza, L-3 Genesys, BendixKing's KI300, Jack Pelton Interview--Part 1, Lockheed Buys Sikorsky, ANN's AirVenture Innovation Preview ROCKED! >[...]

Airborne at OSH15 - 07.20.15: Redbird Sidekick, Pelton Upbeat, Hartzell Re-Props

Also: Aviation Gateway Park, New Vintage Plaza, L-3 Genesys, BendixKing's KI300, Jack Pelton Interview--Part 1, Lockheed Buys Sikorsky, ANN's AirVenture Innovation Preview ROCKED! >[...]

AeroSports Update, FAA Emphasizes Transition Training

The FAA Has Updated Their Advisory Circular For Transitioning To Unfamiliar Aircraft The FAA released an update to an Advisory Circular (AC) on transitioning to unfamiliar aircraft>[...]

EAA, Other Groups, Fire Back At ALPA

Pilot Union Opposed To Third Class Medical Reform EAA, with the support of other GA organizations, held a news conference at AirVenture Saturday to respond to a letter from the Air>[...]

Klassic Klyde Morris 07.27.15

Tell 'Em They Need To Read The Fine Print, Klyde FMI: www.klydemorris.com>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2015 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC