A businessman who traveled into space with William Shatner died last month after a small plane crash in New Jersey.
Glenn de Vries, 49, was aboard Blue Origin’s New Shepard spacecraft on October 13, spending more than 10 minutes in space after launch with Shatner and others.
State police said he was killed along with another person in the New Jersey accident.
We are devastated to hear of the sudden death of Glenn De Vries. He brought so much life and energy to the entire Blue Origin team and to his crewmates. His passion for aviation, philanthropy and dedication to his craft will be respected and admired for a long time. pic.twitter.com/1hwnjntTVs
– blueorigin November 12, 2021
The plane, a single-engine Cessna 172, crashed Thursday in a wooded area of Hampton Township in the northern part of the state.
The Federal Aviation Administration alerted public safety agencies to search for the missing plane in the afternoon.
Emergency teams found the wreckage about an hour later.
Blue Origin, the space company founded by Jeff Bezos, said it was “devastated” by the sudden death of Mr. de Vries.
“He brought so much life and energy to the entire Blue Origin team and to his crewmates,” the company said.
“His passion for aviation, philanthropy and dedication to his craft will be respected and admired for a long time.”
Mr. de Vries was the founder of Medidata Solutions, a clinical research firm.
The other person killed in the accident was Thomas P. Fisher, 54, the founder and principal of a family-run flying school.
Bezos’ partner, Lauren Sanchez, called de Vries’ death a “painful loss”.
“We got to know Glenn De Vries, an incredible man, and his partner, Leah,” she wrote on Instagram.
“Lea’s love for Glenn was visible every time we saw them together. As he left into space, I held my hand so tightly that I felt pain. Thinking of that moment today with a broken heart. Our deepest sympathies are with the Leah and Glenn family, we are deeply saddened by the tragic news.”