This story is over 5 years old.

The VICE Guide to Right Now

Some College Kids Found $5,000 NASA Flight Suits at a Thrift Store

They bought all six jumpsuits for 20 cents a pop.
Drew Schwartz
Brooklyn, US
Foto via Wikimedia Commons

Two Florida college students hit up a blowout sale at their local Salvation Army recently and got busy digging—thumbing through the racks, keeping an eye out for shirts with crazy patterns or whatever millennials are into these days. Being a relative pro, one rifled through a small, nondescript box tucked in a corner and spotted a NASA logo peeking out from the bottom of the bin. That box led Skyer Ashworth, 24, to six bonafide NASA space suits, local CBS affiliate WKMG reported Monday. He called over his thrifting buddy Talia Rappa, and the two gawked at how official-looking the things were—American flag patches, sewn-in name tags, the whole shebang.


They snapped up the six suits for 20 cents a pop and headed home with their booty. The pair managed to get a few experts at the American Space Museum to examine the suits, and learned they were the real deal—five blue jumpsuits had been worn by astronauts on missions to space, and the white one belonged to a member of the ground crew. The museum estimates each space suit could fetch roughly $5,000 at auction.

"Who knows how long they'd been there," Rappa told WKMG. "We laid them out on the cart and just looked at them, and just—jaw dropped."

Some of the suits reportedly belonged to astronauts George Nelson, Robert Parker, Owen Garriot, and Charles Walker, who jetted up through the atmosphere in the 80s. Though it's sort of a bummer the Salvation Army didn't realize what a treasure it had, it's almost as if the space gods sought the duo out, seeing as Ashworth studies aerospace engineering and Rappa, astrophysics, at the University of Central Florida.

As Neil Armstrong's old bag of moon dust proved, space junk can be worth a whole lot of money, and the two plan on auctioning off the suits at the American Space Museum in November to help pay for their tuition. While their legendary find might go down in thrift shop history, it'll never top the time a guy found a cooler full of weed at his local Goodwill.

Follow Drew Schwartz on Twitter.