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Rod surfaces for decompression
following his Aquanaut
Certification mission on the
Scott Carpenter Station.



 

Eugene Roddenberry, AQ

Visions of distant stars and bizarre planets are his family's business. Eugene Wesley Roddenberry Jr., also known as Rod, was born into a family empire that is adored by legions of devoted fans worldwide. He is the son of legendary science-fiction creator, Gene Roddenberry, who's television series, "Star Trek" and "Earth: Final Conflict," changed the face of television. His father created television series that went beyond just science fiction entertainment, they were conduits for the transfer of information and playgrounds for intellectual thought. Gene Roddenberry not only used the television medium to tell stories of exploration, but also to convey his views on humanity. Eugene Roddenberry is definitely his father's son -- he shares his father's passionate views on the world and humanity. He is a down-to-earth person who truly believes that one day everyone will peacefully co-exist regardless of race, creed, culture or even planet. 

Eugene Roddenberry was born in the television mecca of Los Angeles, California to Gene Roddenberry and Majel Barrett Roddenberry. Eugene's parents made a conscious effort to keep their son out of the limelight and he was able to have a relatively normal yet priveledged childhood without the glare of Hollywood. He attended John Thomas Dye Elementary School in Los Angeles and then went to Harvard-Westlake High School in Studio City, California. During his formative years, Eugene's interests were more social than academic. However, he soon understood the importance of education and was able to increase his marks as he progressed in his schooling. He eventually enrolled at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts. His college career was interrupted towards his final semester because Eugene couldn't resist the pull of the family business and was offered the opportunity to work on a new series," Gene Roddenberry's Earth: Final Conflict," to be shot in Toronto, Canada. He jumped at the chance to learn about the entertainment industry and to develop his creative juices with some of the most successful producers in the industry.

As the technical advisor for "Gene Roddenberry's Earth: Final Conflict" Eugene's job is to provide advise on how to better merge the "Gene Roddenberry philosophy" into each story. He is also there to provide useful commentary and suggestions on continuity and story matter on each and every outline, script and revision that are generated by the creative writing team. This position also offers him the opportunity to work with his mother, Majel, who is one of the executive producers on the show and also plays the role of "Dr. J. Belman."

"Earth: Final Conflict" is essentially his first serious foray into the entertainment industry and qualifies as his both worst and most exciting job. In 1987, Eugene was given his first official job as a production assistant on "Star Trek: The Next Generation" by no other than his father. He continued to work as a production assistant over the course of five summers and a school semester on the set of "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine." "At age thirteen, I didn't realize the opportunity that I had been given and was unappreciative," he says. In the future, Eugene hopes to aid in the struggle for a better humanity through the medium of film. Eugene has the dreams and visions of a better world his father had and it is his wish to share his father's philosophy with the world. "In many ways, I feel humanity has moved ahead one more step in a positive direction because of my father's vision." 

The death of his father was a definite turning point in Eugene's life. Many years later it has indirectly coincided with his move into the entertainment industry. He has used this opportunity to speak to friends and family but also the fans of Star Trek to learn more about his father and come to terms with the Roddenberry legacy. It has allowed him to gain a better understanding of who his father was and why he did the things he did. As Eugene puts it best, "I would not say that at this point in my life I have gained a complete understanding of my father, however, I don't think I'll ever be able to say that." 

In the small amount of spare time that Eugene has for himself, he enjoys being at one with nature, both on land and in the water. He is an avid mountain biker and scuba diver. He also has a passion for the martial arts, particularly Ju-Jitsu, and all its variety of life's teachings. Eugene's best friend is Orion, who is a German Shepherd/Rottweiler mix, and the two are almost inseparable.

Eugene is out to continue to convey the dream he now shares with his father. He hopes that some day all differences can be set aside and all the creatures on earth and even in the universe, can be united as one. "I'd like to know that when I pass on, humanity is progressing in a more positive direction. Humanity is at its best when it works together for a single goal."

Rod was certified as an Aquanaut in 1998 in a Scott Carpenter Space Analog Station mission.