Health and wellness coach Keisha Schahaff and daughter prepare as space trip draws closer

front 2 space (1)
Former flight attendant and health and lifestyle coach, Keisha Schahaff, with her daughter Anastatia Mayars (Photo contributed)
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By Robert A Emmanuel

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Since winning the tickets for the trip of a lifetime, Keisha Schahaff, the former flight attendant and health and wellness coach, has been intensively training, preparing for that moment when she and her daughter become the first Antiguans to go to space.

Schahaff won two tickets for a commercial trip to space worth US$1 million, sponsored by the founder of Virgin Galactic, Sir Richard Branson.

Speaking to Observer over the weekend, the mother explained that she had been “going through different trainings” but noted that the last few months have been “more about preparing my mind for what I am going to be doing after the space flight.”

In reference to the tests that she has had to take since 2021, she explained that she had to travel to the UK for a full medical examination by a doctor approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), as well as many medical records checks.

“I have been very lucky that I have been maintaining a healthy lifestyle so that worked to my advantage,” she said.

She revealed that today (Monday), she will be in New Mexico for five days in-person training.

“It is a full eight-hour training where I will have to learn and [engage in] simulations, so I am looking forward to that,” she said.

Meanwhile, her 18-year-old daughter, Anastatia Mayars, an astrophysics student with a dream of becoming a NASA engineer, who will be accompanying her on the flight, will also receive the training in New Mexico.

She will be arriving to the US State from Scotland.

Schahaff said that it is still not known when the space flight will officially occur, but she revealed that organisers are hoping for a July launch.

Moving on, the health coach also spoke to Observer media about the people she had met during her journey in preparing for the historic flight.

“I met Maja Muric, the Director of Galactic Unite [at Virgin Galactic], and what she does is starting the preparation of your mind for what you are going to be doing afterwards, and working with children,” she said.

“So, they do a lot of mentorships with kids, and collaborating with future astronauts to educate kids about space.”

She also mentioned one astronaut that she has collaborated with recently.

“One guy in particular, Ron Rosano, his mission is educating kids about space, so he is interviewing with schools, getting other scientists, astronauts and engineers to join him with the talks, so the kids can ask questions,”

She added that she and her daughter joined in those conversations at various schools, particularly Island Academy—her daughter’s alma mater.

“That also gave me ideas of how I can start my own mission in doing something like that,” the former flight attendant explained.

Schahaff also revealed what her message was for young people and those who will be eagerly watching her flight.

“If we can create healthier minds then we can create a healthier planet, because if our minds are not in a stable place…we cannot make a change until we make the change within ourselves, and the earth is our only home and we need to protect it,” she concluded.

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