Billionaire Richard Branson blasts off into space (includes video story)

Founder of Virgin Galactic Richard Branson has achieved a historic flight. Branson became the first person to ride into space aboard a rocket he helped fund.

His journey was captured and broadcasted on live streams. Virgin Galactic’s ship rocketed more than 50 miles above the earth.

“It’s a complete experience of a lifetime. To the next generation of dreamers, if we can do this, just imagine what you can do,” shared Branson.

Branson and his crew returned safely to earth and celebrated their mission accomplished along with their families.

Richard Branson also shared how this mission had been a longtime dream of his. Branson’s process had been in the making since 2004. His goal was to create a winged spacecraft that would withhold eight people: two pilots and six passengers.

“I’ve dreamt of going to space since I was a kid. I have always pictured what it would be like, and it was just far more extraordinary than I could ever, ever imagine.”

In the billionaire race to space, Branson beat Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, as he launched his trip first.

Before allowing paying customers to fly, Virgin Galactic will conduct one more test flight.

Richard Branson said he would not hesitate to redo this trip– if the waiting list didn’t have more than 600 individuals on it.

“I would go back tomorrow if I didn’t feel I was taking a seat away from the many hundreds of people who have already signed to go up and the many hundreds of people who will want to sign up.”

The price for a seat is up to a quarter-million dollars. However, Virgin Galactic is giving away two free tickets in a contest for those who are feeling lucky.

Zitlali Solache is a student in Florida International University, pursuing her Masters degree in Spanish-Language Broadcast Journalism. Zitlali Solache is Mexican American and has a passion for storytelling and news. She has interned for WPBT PBS, WSVN Channel 7 and STEP Univision. After graduation, Zitlali aspires to become a reporter/anchor in her hometown Miami, FL.