AKRON — Goodyear is set to christen its newest airship, Wingfoot Three, on Aug. 30 and has invited Shaesta Waiz, the youngest woman to fly solo around the world in a single-engine aircraft, to lead the ceremony.
The ceremony is planned for 2 p.m. on that Thursday at Goodyear's 100-year-old Wingfoot Lake Hangar in Suffield.
In 2017, at the age of 30, Ms. Waiz flew more than 24,000 nautical miles over a 21-week period and visited 22 countries on her journey. While visiting, she spent time at education and outreach events that promoted Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) principles. Her efforts reached more than 3,000 students, and she continues to promote STEM education through her non-profit, Dreams Soar Inc.
Richard Kramer, Goodyear chairman, CEO and president, said in a statement that Goodyear is "delighted" to have Ms. Waiz perform the honors.
"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."
Ms. Waiz, an Afghan-American, will join a list of noteworthy women to have christened Goodyear airships, including aviator Amelia Earhart (1929), astronaut Sally Ride (2000), "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," Ms. Waiz said.