Actor William Shatner briefly stopped Saturday in Tucumcari, traveling from St. Louis to Los Angeles along old Route 66 as part of a campaign to raise awareness for the American Legion Legacy Scholarship.
Shatner is best known for his portrayal of Capt. James T. Kirk in the original “Star Trek” TV series.
He is traveling with his wife Elizabeth, members of various American Legion Riders chapters and a film crew documenting the journey.
“We have been through so many states, but none more beautiful than New Mexico,” Shatner said. “The sunrises and mornings are heaven,” he said.
Shatner said the American Legion Legacy Scholarship program helps children of fallen servicemen and servicewomen who have died on active duty since 9/11.
“The children of these fallen soldiers are our future,” Shatner said. “It’s important to make sure that they have a bright future with a chance to further their education.”
The eight-day journey kicked of on June 23 in Aurora, Illinois, where Shatner took the helm of a 500-horsepower V-8 trike that he designed.
He rode the trike for a portion of the journey, though he has recently been riding a different trike with his wife.
As Shatner has made his way across the country he has been joined by Legion Riders and has stopped at American Legion posts. During his stops, local members have shown him bits and pieces of Americana unique to their communities
“I have had the opportunity to see a lot of great sites along the way,” Shatner said.
Elizabeth Shatner said the ride is a testament to she and her husband’s charity efforts for veterans and their families.
Elizabeth is the president of the All Glory Project that seeks to foster and support programs and institutions and that utilize animal-assisted and adjunct therapies in aiding military veterans and their families, according to the website.