Nichelle Nichols’ ashes are headed to space

The late “Star Trek” star Nichelle Nichols will travel to the final frontier one last time.

On Thursday, Celestis Inc., a company that specializes in memorial spaceflights, announced it had organized an unambiguous Trekkie mission to send a “symbolic portion” of the actor’s cremated remains to the stars.

Nichols, who is perhaps best known as the USS Enterprise’s communications officer, Lt. Uhura was known to have died in July.

In a press release, Celestis said Nichols’ ashes and a sample of her DNA will be on board the Celestis Enterprise Flight on “an aptly named rocket called the Vulcan” later this year. (The late Leonard Nimoy played the Vulcan named Spock in the franchise for decades.)

“We are truly honored to add a legendary actress, activist and educator to Enterprise Flight’s manifesto,” said Charles M. Chafer, co-founder and CEO of Celestis Inc., in a statement. “Now our Enterprise flight will have on board the person who most fully embodied the vision of ‘Star Trek’ as a diverse, inclusive and exploratory universe.”

According to Celestis, its Enterprise flight, in partnership with the United Launch Alliance, will fly beyond the Earth-Moon system and launch more than 200 capsules containing customers’ ashes, tributes and DNA. Nichols’ son Kyle Johnson said his DNA will also be on the flight.

After Nichols’ death, Johnson deemed a commemorative spaceflight a “appropriate memorial to her” given her role in the hit sci-fi franchise and her contributions to the space community.

“That’s where she belongs,” Johnson said.

On the Enterprise flight, Nichols’ ashes will be in familiar company, while the remains of other “Star Trek” characters will be aboard the Vulcan, including creator Gene Roddenberry and his wife Majel Barrett Roddenberry; Scotty actor James Doohan, who played Scotty; and special effects master Douglas Trumbull.

Nichols died of heart failure on July 31 at a hospital in Silver City, NM. She was 89 years old.

https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/story/2022-08-25/nichelle-nichols-ashes-space-star-trek Nichelle Nichols’ ashes are headed to space

Sarah Ridley

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