‘Star Trek’ star Nichelle Nichols will have her ashes launched into space.
The late actress - who died in July aged 89 - will have her remains jetted up into space on the Enterprise Flight’s Vulcan Rocket later this year to honour her iconic role as Lt. Nyota Uhura on the 60s sci-fi series that also starred William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy.
Kyle Johnson, Nichelle’s son - who will include his DNA on the mission, which will depart from Florida’s Cape Canaveral, to be with his mother - said of the mission: "My only regret is that I cannot share this eternal tribute standing beside my mother at the launch. I know she would be profoundly honoured for this unique experience and enthusiastically encourage all of her fans to join us vicariously by contributing your thoughts, affections, memories, [Nichelle Nichols-]inspired successes, dreams, and aspirations via email to be launched with her on this flight!"
The news of her death was announced by Kyle and the official ‘Star Trek’ Twitter account, which posted: "We’re deeply saddened to report the passing of Nichelle Nichols - a trailblazer, an inspiration, and so much more. She will be deeply missed.”
Nichelle’s career had a deep impact on many other Black stars, such as Whoopi Goldberg, who labelled the actress “a trailblazer” and starred on the 80s edition of the same series.
The 66-year-old comic said: “Nichelle Nichols was a trailblazer, a heroine, and an extraordinary woman – somebody who inspired millions and millions of people, but who inspired me because I explained when I went to get my gig at ‘Star Trek’ that Nichelle was the first black person I’d ever seen who made it to the future.
“She was head of communications. And this show and this woman was the one beacon that said, ‘Yes, we’ll be there.’ “And it just made me feel like that was an amazing thing. She helped propel other women to go into space. She was extraordinary and I was lucky enough to spend time with her over the years. “She was my friend. She’ll be missed.”