“Imagine an everlasting memorial where family and friends can commemorate their departed loved ones anytime and anywhere. Instead of looking down upon the earth in reminiscence, we can raise our eyes to the eternal wonders within the night sky, knowing that our loved ones are always with us. Elysium Space offers its awe-inspiring celestial services to provide a connective experience for families and friends, creating a new sacred space for remembrance and an eternal memorial for those we love. By looking into the infinite beauty of the night sky, we can remember the beauty of those who have touched our lives forever.”
These are the promises made by the San Francisco based company, Elysium Space. The company promotes three types of celestial memorial services for the families of deceased loved ones. The Shooting Star Memorial consists of sending a small bit of cremated ashes into Earth’s orbit, where it will then resemble a shooting star soaring across the night sky. The Milky Way Memorial promises to send a person’s remains into deep space to travel the galaxies forever. The recently promoted Lunar Memorial promises to send a person’s remains (less than ounce) to be buried on the moon.
In 1992, the remains of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry were shot into space. Since then, the remains of more than 450 people have been sent into orbit, most of them on “memorial spaceflights” with several other ash remains. Despite the hopes of family members to reach the moon, the majority of the vials carrying the remains has come back down to Earth or disintegrated upon reentry through Earth’s atmosphere.
In a press release published by Elysium, the company states that, “Families now have the historic opportunity to commemorate their departed loved ones every night through the everlasting splendor and soft illumination of the Earth’s closest companion: the Moon.” The company has partnered with “lunar logistics company” Astrobotic Technology in order to carry out the missions.
The process begins when Elysium sends a small ash capsule to families to place about one gram of ashes inside. The family then sends the capsule back to Elysium where it awaits a space launch.
The cost for Elysium’s moon burial services is $11,950 to send one gram of ashes to the Moon. However, the company is hosting a promotion where, “Early reservations for the Lunar Memorial service open at $9,950 for the first 50 participants.”
Since funerals in the United States generally cost between $7,000 and $10,000, it appears that the price for the Lunar Memorial Service may not be out of this world for some families.