The memorial service of 30-year-old Mandla Maseko, also known as Space-boy, will be held in Pretoria on Thursday.

Maseko died in motorbike crash on Saturday.

He was set to become the first black African in space.  Maseko earned the name Space-boy after beating 1 million people to become one of 23 people bagging a seat on an hour long sub-orbital space trip.

At the Maseko family home in Mabopane lays Mandla’s damaged bike. His life has been cut short and his space dream will not materialise.

Maseko worked for the South African Air Force and his colleagues have also paid tribute to him.

Colonel Eugene Motati says Maseko was a great colleague and friend.

Space-boy grew up on the dusty streets of Soshanguve. He trained as a private pilot, and became a corporal in the South African National Defence Force.

Maseko’s funeral service will be held in Mabopane on Saturday. He will be laid to rest at the Zandfontein Cemetery in Tshwane.