James Doohan, best known as Scotty from Star Trek: The Original Series, spent much of his career playing a spacefaring hero. But today he will finally make it into orbit—albeit seven years after his death.
Doohan’s cremated ashes, along with those of about 300 other space enthusiasts, will be included on a private spacecraft heading to the International Space Station. Space Exploration Technologies’ Falcon 9 rocket is set to deliver equipment to the ISS, but it also has another purpose.
Its secondary mission? Taking a second stage layer that includes the lipstick-sized tubes of cremated remains, which will be released to orbit the Earth for approximately a year as a zero-G memorial, before being incinerated in the atmosphere. It cost approximately $3,000 per family to have the ashes included on the flight.
In addition to Doohan, the capsule also includes the remains of late Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper, who died in 2004. Doohan passed away in 2005 of pneumonia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Beam him up!