AKRON—Goodyear is set to christen its newest blimp, Wingfoot Three, and has invited Shaesta Waiz, the youngest woman to fly solo around the world in a single-engine aircraft, to lead the ceremony.
Waiz, who at the age of 30, flew more than 24,000 nautical miles May 13-Oct. 4, 2017. Along the way, she visited 22 countries and spent time at educational and outreach events that promoted Science, Technology, Engineering and Math principles. Her efforts reached more than 3,000 students, and she continues to promote STEM education through her non-profit, Dreams Soar Inc.
"We're delighted to have Shaesta serve as the christener of our newest blimp," Richard Kramer, Goodyear chairman, CEO and president, said in a statement. "Shaesta has an inspiring life story and turned her passion for flying into a record-setting solo journey around the world. She serves as a role model to young women to follow their dreams by pursuing STEM education and careers in aviation."
Waiz will join a list of noteworthy women to have christened Goodyear airships. They include aviator Amelia Earhart (1929), astronaut Dr. Sally Ride (2000) and "Good Morning America" host Robin Roberts (2014) and Akron native Savannah James (2016).
"It is truly an honor to be selected by Goodyear to christen Wingfoot Three. I know Amelia Earhart will be with us on this special day, just as her spirit was with me during the Pacific Ocean crossing from Hawaii to California," Waiz said in a statement.
The ceremony is planned for 2 p.m. Aug. 30 at Goodyear's 100-year-old Wingfoot Lake Hangar in Suffield, Ohio.