A Cedar Falls Native is Spending Thanksgiving in Outer Space [VIDEO]
First off, who doesn't want to feel weightless on Thanksgiving? Well, a Cedar Falls native is celebrating his turkey day in outer space and will be able to experience just that. How many of us dreamt of going to space as a kid? Astronaut Raja Chari is currently on the International Space Station living a dream. Chari was actually born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, moved to Cedar Falls as a baby, and was raised in the Cedar Valley.
After a highly successful career in the U.S. Air Force where he reached the rank of colonel, Chari joined NASA and became a part of Astronaut Group 22. reported for duty in August of 2017 to begin his two-year training as an astronaut, according to NASA's website.
The Eastern Iowa native will have a unique view for Thanksgiving
Raja Chari and his wife and kids have a tradition and, even though he's floating some 250 miles above the planet, he does not plan to break it. A Radio Iowa story reveals that the 44-year old Chari and his family will still share what they are thankful for this year.
Typically in our family Thanksgiving, we’ll do a thing where we go around the table and say what we’re thankful or grateful for ... so I’ll probably call in and do that remotely. -Raja Chari via Radio Iowa
In the video, seen below, Chari appears (second from the left) floating upsidedown, attempting to prepare a Thanksgiving meal. Of course, because he and his fellow crew members are in space, the dinner is contained in packets of freeze-dried plastic and will require hot water to make it edible. Sounds like an interesting adventure, no?
Raja Chari still has roots in Iowa
Chari and his wife, Holly Schaffter Chari, have three kids. Chari's wife is also a Cedar Falls native. He attended Columbus High School in Waterloo and graduated in 1995. He then moved to Colorado to join the Air Force.