Episode 4

These kids have my entire heart

A life-changing view, unlike any other. Floating upside down during a chat with patients of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Flying through the air, chasing a piece of pizza. These are some of the moments Hayley Arceneaux will remember from the Inspiration4 mission. In this episode we’ll hear from Hayley and her mom Colleen Arceneaux about what happened during the three days in orbit, and how Inspiration4’s fundraising effort will help support the ongoing mission of St. Jude.



These kids have my entire heart

The crew members of Inspiration4 returned safely to Earth in September, after their three-day mission orbiting the planet. Jared Isaacman, Chris Sembroski, Dr. Sian Proctor and Hayley Arceneaux have had a chance to reflect on their experiences, and they’ve described the mission as life changing. Inspiration4 has significance beyond its crew members. It may turn out to be the first of many private missions to further space exploration. And it will have a lasting effect on St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, raising more that $238 million. In this episode, we’ll hear from Hayley Arceneaux, and her mom Colleen, about their impressions of the mission.

Hayley Arceneaux

On speaking to St. Jude patients during a video call while orbiting

“It just felt so full circle. I’ve been on this journey for almost 20 years. And a lot has happened in the last 20 years. And now I have my dream job (as a physician assistant at St. Jude), which really feels like my purpose in life. And I thought everything was really settled. And then, when I got this call to go to space, it was almost confusing. Because I thought, you know, I have my purpose, I’m working with the kids. But then I realized I could reach so many more kids. And so many other St. Jude patients who I wouldn’t have crossed paths with.”

On seeing the Earth from her vantage point in the Dragon capsule’s cupola

“When I was in the cupola, I could see the entire 360 view of the Earth. With the blackness of space around it, with starts and the moon. And it was just the most beautiful thing I have ever seen in my life. I was just so awestruck. And that’s that moment that changed my life. I was filled with just this intense feeling of gratitude. I could not believe what I was seeing. And that I was getting to experience that. And that feeling of gratitude is going to stick with me forever. You know, I’ve always had a lot of gratitude just to be alive, for every single day that I’ve been given. And for St. Jude. But it gave me a whole new perspective on gratitude.”

On how her participation ultimately makes space travel more accessible

“Sitting in the seat in the launch position for hours (during training) was actually really painful for my leg. And SpaceX took that seriously, and they were able to make a new footrest that helped the positioning and reduced my pain. And you know, I was at first a little embarrassed about it, but then I thought, more and more people are going to go to space, and that includes the not physically perfect crowd, and now we have a footrest that helps more people.”


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