Much to his disappointment, an aviation enthusiast was forced to forgo boarding a three-day SpaceX flight due to being overweight.
Enthusiast, Kyle Hippchen, won a seat on September’s all-civilian Inspiration 4 mission.
Hippchen, who is a professional pilot from Florida, quietly gave up his seat to one of his best friends.
“It hurts too much. I’m incredibly disappointed. But that’s the way it is,” Hippchen told The Associated Press while saying that even watching the mission documentary was too painful for him.
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He had spent $600 on raffle entries for the chance to win a seat on the SpaceX mission. The seat was originally purchased by billionaire CEO Jared Isaacman.
Proceeds from the raffle went to St Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
When he received an email requesting personal details for the assignment in March 2021, he realized he was 80 pounds over the maximum weight limit of 250 pounds.
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“I was trying to figure out how I could lose 80 pounds in six months, which, I mean, it’s possible, but it’s not the healthiest thing in the world to do,” Hippchen said.
The professional pilot then decided to give his place to his college roommate, Chris Sembroski, who said he was “eternally grateful” for the opportunity.
(With agency contributions)