Even people that haven’t seen a single episode of any iteration of Star Trek, never mind the original series, will be fully aware of Montgomery Scott’s contributions to the pop culture landscape.
The Enterprise’s chief engineer and resident exasperated Scotsman has been part of our lexicon for over half a century thanks to his cries of ‘I’m giving her all she’s got, Captain!’ and William Shatner’s iconic ‘Beam me up, Scotty’.
Actor James Doohan may have passed away in 2005, but his memory lives on in a fittingly otherworldly location following the reveal that his ashes have traveled more than 1.7 billion miles through outer space having taken up residency aboard the International Space Station.
Video game entrepreneur Richard Garriott is the man responsible, having smuggled Doohan’s remains onto the ISS during his 12-day trip as a private astronaut, and he described the mission as ‘clandestine’.
When he passed fifteen years ago at the age of 85, the Canadian star wanted his ashes to boldly go where no ashes had ever gone before, but any official requests made by his family were denied. After hearing about it, Garriott took a laminated photo of Doohan and some of the man himself onto the Columbus module when he was jetting off to the space station as one of the very first private citizens to make the trip, stashing them under the floor of the ship and keeping it a secret from everyone.
Incredibly, this wasn’t the first time Doohan’s ashes had been blasted into the cosmos, but SpaceX’s Falcon 1 rocket failed minutes after launching back in 2008, before an urn containing some of them was placed onboard the company’s Falcon 9.
Not only has Doohan posthumously been involved in three separate journeys into space, but during those trips he’s orbited our planet more than 70,000 times, and you’d struggle to think of a better legacy for one of Star Trek’s most popular and beloved characters to leave behind.