The Only Man in the World Who Has Visited Every Country and Even Outer Space

From the time he was 6 years old, when he saw Apollo 11 launch, Jim Kitchen knew what he wanted to do with his life. Although he became a professor at the University of North Carolina, he was determined to someday get to space. During his career, the 59-year-old visited all 193 United Nations-recognized countries. After the 193rd country in 2019, he wondered what his next journey would be. He was one of tens of thousands of applicants for SpaceX’s Inspiration4 sub-orbit around the earth, but wasn’t chosen. He could have been one of the first 600 passengers with Virgin Galactic, but didn’t want to wait. That’s when he contacted someone from Blue Origin — the privately funded spaceflight services company — and wound up gaining a spot on a Blue Origin rocket for a quick trip to space in March of this year. Going 2,300 mph, the ride took the crew 60 miles above the earth, where they experienced weightlessness for roughly 3 minutes. So, what’s next for someone who has visited every country on the planet and gone into space? Kitchen says his next dream is to visit the International Space Station. The only problem is, he doesn’t have the $55 million he would need to do it.