Ashes of "Star Trek's" Scotty found after space ride

LOS ANGELES Fri May 18, 2007 9:54pm BST

A visitor to Spaceport America lines up his binoculars with the UP Aerospace 'Spaceloft XL' launch in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico April 28, 2007. They beamed him up -- and on Friday, after a three-week search, they found the rocket that had carried ashes of ''Star Trek'' actor James Doohan briefly into space. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES)

A visitor to Spaceport America lines up his binoculars with the UP Aerospace 'Spaceloft XL' launch in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico April 28, 2007. They beamed him up -- and on Friday, after a three-week search, they found the rocket that had carried ashes of ''Star Trek'' actor James Doohan briefly into space.

Credit: Reuters/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES)

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - They beamed him up -- and on Friday, after a three-week search, they found the rocket that had carried ashes of "Star Trek" actor James Doohan briefly into space.

The remains of Doohan, whose "Star Trek" character Scotty inspired the television catch phrase "Beam me up, Scotty," were blasted off to the edge of space from New Mexico on April 29, two years after his death at the age of 85.

The payload also included ashes of astronaut Gordon Cooper, who first went into space in 1963, and another 200 people.

But the UP Aerospace Spaceloft XL rocket carrying the capsules with the ashes back to Earth got lost in rugged terrain and the search for it was hampered by bad weather.

"Now we can all say 'mission accomplished,'" Rick Homans, executive director of New Mexico's Spaceport Authority, said on Friday.

Organizers said the rocket and the individual capsules containing the ashes were in good condition and would be mounted on plaques and returned to the families.

Canadian-born Doohan played the starship Enterprise's chief engineer Montgomery Scott in the original 1966-1969 "Star Trek" television series.

Houston-based Space Services Inc. Space Services Inc. charges $495 to send a portion of a person's ashes into suborbital space and return it to Earth.