Antiguan mother-daughter duo make history aboard Virgin Galactic spaceflight

Anastasia Mayers (l) and Keisha Schahaff (r) flanking fellow cosmonaut


Antigua and Barbuda’s Keisha Schahaff and Anastasia Mayers have made history as the Caribbean’s first mother-daughter astronaut duo.

The pair joined a group of three private cosmonauts on Virgin Galactic’s first private spaceflight, which took off from New Mexico.

The Antiguan astronauts represented their country on this historic journey, and the Tourism Authority organized two public watch parties to celebrate their achievement.

The festivities began at 9 a.m., and the flight took off at about 11:20 a.m. today. Prime Minister Gaston Browne was joined by Sir Richard Branson, Jamaican-American Christopher Huie, and the family of the Antiguan and Barbudan astronauts for the launch.

Browne praised the mother-daughter duo for their bravery and encouraged young people across the country to use their history-making as a source of inspiration.

He also expressed gratitude to Richard Branson for making the occasion possible.

With this achievement, Antigua and Barbuda will be forever remembered among the stars as a transformational small island state striving to become an economic powerhouse in the Caribbean.


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  1. The Crow
    August 13, 2023

    They are just tourists and not astronauts

  2. Juanita
    August 11, 2023

    Kudos to them, but they are not astronauts; they are space tourists. An astronaut is a person trained, equipped, and deployed by a human spaceflight program to serve as a commander or crew member aboard a spacecraft.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2
    • Ibo France
      August 13, 2023

      I find that the governments and people of our region tend to hype or overstate accomplishments.

      A regional government makes some minor renovations and additions to a hospital, they tout it as having the best healthcare in the world.

      How can you refer to space tourists as astronauts? Quite ridiculous! Give them their accolades of travelling on the edge of space. Stop the over exuberance and sensationalism. By making these exaggerated pronouncements, you are watering down what it takes to become a real astronaut.

      You are quite correct, as usual, Jaunita.

  3. Ibo France
    August 10, 2023

    I am elated for these two of average means being able to experience a trip to space. Hope their experience is a very memorable one.

    We now have space tourism. Lunar probably next.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0
    • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
      August 10, 2023

      Ibo, it not cost that lady and her daughter one dime to fly to the edge of space.

      They won the trip!
      There are other young black girls who went before them.
      And this is not a situation where they are up in space flying around.

      The flight goes to the edge of space and immediately returns to earth,
      And regarding dad, nonsensical comment that he would prefer not to go into space than come down in some ocean.
      That boy is so ignorant of the issue, has no clue that people returning to earth from space have no longer splash down in oceans.
      We need to inform the feeble and uninformed minds as ds, such land as regular aircraft’s.

      • derp
        August 11, 2023

        Actually they still splash down in the ocean, at least SpaceX does for now, they will eventually stop this when Starship is fully operational. The Russians land back on earth though.

        • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
          August 11, 2023

          It will always take some stupid Dominican to talk crap.
          If they splashed down in the ocean, that means all of NASA space shuttles going into space and returning over the past ten or fifteen years are still splashing down in the oceans.
          There’s is a space station out there, which changes crew and supplies are taken to, so are you suggesting that these fixed-wings shuttles are splashing down into the ocean in as of ten as they go up and return?
          I mean information is out there for anyone who wants to know.
          Rather than talking fart forgetting there are people who know reading your nonsense, why don’t you learn how to research and educate yourself and stop talking crap.

        • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
          August 11, 2023

          Guy some of the booster Spac x reuse falls in the ocean, but people are no longer splashing down in water.
          Space aircraft’s today are using fixed-wings to travel in Space.
          I don’t know where you are and what science fiction books you read, but the days the Jectsons fictional dream has long become reality.
          Nobody from Space X splash down in ocean.

      • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
        August 11, 2023

        Where it read dad, should be “ds.”
        The old man standing in the picture was the only paying passenger who brought his ticket about twenty years ago when the idea of taking people out to space was first proposed.

      • Ibo France
        August 12, 2023

        Noted! I am abreast with everything you have explained. It shows that you are well informed.

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