"Joe's funny as hell," he says "He feels like my dad now."
Kittinger says he's finally found the man worthy of breaking his record.
"I had no idea [the record] would last 52 years," Kittinger says. "Felix is the perfect guy to do it. He's a professional athlete, he's trained, and he has a goal."
Once Baumgarter has reached 120,000 feet, he'll stand on the edge of his capsule, higher than anyone has ever been before, and he'll jump. If everything goes right, in a span of 10 minutes, he will break the speed of sound, a 52-year-old record, and drive a little more doubt into the idea that for humans, the sky is the limit.
Jason Koebler is a science and technology reporter for U.S. News & World Report. You can follow him on Twitter or reach him at email@example.com