Image source, ReutersImage caption, Glen de Vries, far left, with other passengers, including William Shatner, centre right, on Blue Origin’s New Shepard

A US businessman who blasted into space with Star Trek actor William Shatner has died in a plane crash less than a month later.

Glen de Vries, 49, was aboard a single-engine aircraft which crashed in woodland in the US state of New Jersey on Thursday.

The other person on the flight, Thomas Fischer, 54, was also killed.

Mr De Vries, who joined Mr Shatner on Amazon founder Jeff Bezos's New Shepard spacecraft, was a tech entrepreneur.

The Cessna 172 plane crashed in a wooded area of a state park near Lake Kemah, about 40 minutes before sunset, according to the Federal Aviation Administration, which is investigating the crash.

This video can not be played

To play this video you need to enable JavaScript in your browser.Media caption, After landing, William Shatner tearfully said the experience had been "unbelievable"

On 13 October Mr De Vries travelled on the Blue Origin sub-orbital capsule with Mr Shatner, who became the oldest person to go into space.

Mr Bezos tweeted that he was "heartbroken".

Such a tragic loss. Warm and full of life, Glen made us laugh and lit up the room. He was a visionary, and an innovator – a true leader. Lauren and I are heartbroken and will remember the precious time we got to spend together. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/AYKCGIUQfD

— Jeff Bezos (@JeffBezos) November 12, 2021
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Mr De Vries founded the medical research company Medidata Solutions in 1999. It ranks as the world's most used clinical research platform, according to a profile of Mr Vries posted by Blue Origin prior to his trip to space.