News & Opinion | November 13, 2021 12:13 pm

Blue Origin Crew Member Dies in Cessna Crash

Glen de Vries journeyed into space last month

Glen de Vries
NS-18 crew member, Medidata Solutions Co-Founder, Glen de Vries, attending a press conference at the New Shepard rocket landing pad, in the West Texas region.
PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images

On Friday, a small Cessna aircraft crashed in Hampton Township, New Jersey, killing two men on board — Glen de Vries and Thomas Fischer. Tragically, it had only been a month since de Vries was part of a high-profile jaunt into space. He was one of the crew members alongside William Shatner on Blue Origin’s trip into space in October on the spacecraft New Shepard.

A report at The Guardian has more about the crash and de Vries’s life. He co-founded Medidata Solutions, a technology company focusing on software used in clinical trials, in 1999, following an earlier version of the company’s debut in 1994.

Blue Origin described itself as “devastated” in a statement provided to The Guardian. “[De Vries] brought so much life and energy to the entire Blue Origin team and to his fellow crew mates,” the statement continued. “His passion for aviation, his charitable work, and his dedication to his craft will long be revered and admired.”

The crash took place in Hampton Township, located in Sussex County, New Jersey. According to one local news report, the FAA’s preliminary report indicated that the plane was engaged in an instructional flight.