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March 23, 2022

Blue Origin's next launch will send Coatesville native into space

Businessman Marty Allen will be one of six crew members on the company's fourth manned flight

A businessman with roots in Chester County will be blasted into the heavens Tuesday on board a spacecraft owned by Blue Origin, the space travel company founded by Amazon chairman Jeff Bezos.

Marty Allen, who graduated from Coatesville High School in 1971, will be one of six passengers on Blue Origin's fourth manned flight, a suborbital mission that will last about 10 minutes

Allen has made a name for himself as a turnaround CEO, guiding Party America through its bankruptcy restructuring and transforming the company into a national retailer. He also was the CEO of California Closet Company. 

Allen now lives in California, but his interest in space dates back to his childhood in Pennsylvania. 

"I've loved aviation from the time I was a kid," he told 6ABC. "I used to build rockets and play with them as a kid. I always dreamed about space."

Allen will undergo four days of training before the launch, which is slated for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday. Blue Origin will stream the liftoff on its website

Comedian Pete Davidson was going to be among the crew, but he backed out when the flight was bumped from its original March 23 launch date. 

Those aboard will experience about three minutes of weightlessness before the spacecraft falls back to Earth and parachutes into the West Texas desert.

Blue Origin doesn't publicly disclose the price of its seats, similar trips offered by Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic were going for $450,000 last month.

Allen plans to bring an American flag in his lone carry-on bag and will fly it in front of his home when he gets back to Earth, 6ABC reported.

He's the son of the late Milton Allen, a prominent member of the Coatesville community who ran Luria Brothers Inc., a Reading company that was once the largest scrap metal broker in the world.