James Doohan, best known as Scotty from Star Trek, died in 2005. Even then there was talk of his ashes being rocketed into space, and tomorrow morning at 4:55 AM that dream will become a reality.
Saturday, May 19th will see the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket make its maiden voyage and become the first commercial supply vehicle to visit the International Space Station. As if that isn’t noteworthy enough occurrence on its own, it was revealed that the cargo will include Doohan’s cremated remains in the Dragon capsule atop the rocket.
This is actually the second attempt to send a piece of Doohan into space. In August 2008 Celestis, a company that will blast your ashes out of the atmosphere for a fee, attempted to send some of his into orbit, but the rocket failed to clear Earth’s atmosphere and plummeted back to the ground.
Wende Doohan, James widow will be on hand at Cape Canaveral, Florida to watch the launch, and Chris Doohan, James’ son, emailed a brief statement about the day to TrekMovie:
I don’t look at the launch as finally putting my dad to rest. We did that a long time ago. I guess I would file it under unfinished business. Is it a cool thing? Absolutely. Is it something he wanted, for sure.
I guess they wanted to keep it a secret because of the failed attempts in the past. Truthfully, it was a secret that was kept from me as well. Likely because they didn’t want us to go through the emotional roller-coaster ride again.
What more fitting resting place for a beloved member of the crew of the Starship Enterprise that floating through space among the stars. You can watch the launch live at www.spacex.com.
For more on the launch, which is itself a historic event, NASA made a short video.