star trek icon Nichelle Nichols takes one last trip across the final frontier.
Celestis Inc., a private spaceflight company that works with NASA, will include some of the actress’ ashes on a United Launch Alliance Vulcan Centaur rocket as part of the upcoming Enterprise flight, which is scheduled to lift off later this year.
The flight will begin in Cape Canaveral, Florida, and is expected to go past the James Webb Telescope and into interplanetary deep space, where the company says the rocket will become the most remote permanent human depot outpost and a pathfinder for human space exploration. .
Nichols, who played Communications Officer Lt. Nyota Uhura in Gene Roddenberry’s 1966 original star trek series, died at the end of July. She was 89 years old. The actress rose to fame for her groundbreaking portrayal of a black female authority figure in a major television role, which came just two years after the 1964 Civil Rights Act was passed.
After considering leaving star trek because of the racism she suffered at the hands of network executives, she was encouraged to continue in her role as Uhura on the USS Enterprise by civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
As part of the flight, Nichols’ ashes will be joined by a few companions star trek names James “Scotty” Doohan as well as Gene and Majel Roddenberry. All four will have some of their cremated remains aboard the Enterprise alongside more than 100 other people.
This is not the first time that members of the star trek family have had parts of their remains sent into space. Gene’s ashes have been sent on a number of Celestis missions, including one in 2014.