The night pioneering astronaut John Glenn died, Jeff Bezos received a message from him.
Smithsonian Magazine was honoring Bezos, founder of aerospace company Blue Origin, at the American Ingenuity Awardson December 8.
Glenn was supposed to attend, but because of his declining health in the last month of his life, the former NASA astronaut wrote Bezos a letter on November 28, to be read at the ceremony.
Hours after he passed, Mae Jemison, the first African American woman in space, read the letter to Bezos at the awards.
“I can tell you I see the day coming when people will board spacecraft the same way millions of us now board jetliners,” Glenn wrote. “When that happens, it will be largely because of your epic achievements this year.”
Blue Origin has successfully launched and landed several rockets in the last year, and plans to launch its 313-feet-tall New Glenn rockets before 2020.
Before he received Glenn’s letter, Bezos shared his condolences on Twitter Thursday:
Thank you, John Glenn. Godspeed.
— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) December 8, 2016
Glenn, the first American to orbit the Earth, died Thursday at age 95. He went on to become a US Senator for Ohio, and returned to space in 1998 as the oldest astronaut ever at the age of 77.
Watch Jemison read Glenn’s letter below:
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
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