Captain’s Corner interview – Mei’konda Delano, USS Astraeus

Captain’s Corner interview – Mei’konda Delano, USS Astraeus

Each month, we interview a captain or first officer of the fleet to gain more insight on what it takes to command a ship and learn more about how each of these staff members found their way into these roles, and what’s been happening under their command

This month, we’re interviewing the Commanding Officer of the starship USS Astraeus, Captain Mei’konda Delano, a Caitian male. 

DeVeau: We meet again!  Last time you were interviewed, you mentioned that Star Trek played a formative part in your life.  Would you be willing to expound a bit about that? 

Delano:  Always a pleasure, Alora! Yes, I was seven years old when TNG came on the air (I still vaguely remember watching the premier live) and fourteen when “All Good Things” aired. In some ways, I grew up with the show. I didn’t worry about much except that there were space ships and a boy who wasn’t too much older than me who got to fly it when season one started, and I was older and ready for the more mature themes when the show started dealing with them later.

It’s been a little over a year since the Astraeus has been active.  What sort of shenanigans have you and the crew been up to in that time? 

In the year since our transition from the Chin’toka to Astraeus, the crew has settled into their new posting and continued their work of securing Shemsh, the first Federation colony in the Par’tha Expanse. In addition to providing medical and disaster relief after the passage of the neutron star through the Lanaxa system which a Galaxy class starship was uniquely suited to, we recently concluded a mission which saw us pulled into an alternate universe in which the Hobus supernova had never occurred.

Because of this, the Romulans had started a highly successful war against the Federation and other Alpha Quadrant species. Our crew participated briefly in the war in the process of getting home, and are now indulging in some R&R while the ship is repaired.

You mentioned that you designed the Astraeus yourself.  How has she remained the same with that initial vision, and how has she changed? 

There have been a few changes over time, which in a way, is in line with my original idea for the ship. Galaxy class vessels have an almost unimaginable amount of internal volume, and I’ve encouraged my crew to come up with different unique locations inside the ship.

Among these is a turbolift shaft which runs the length of the ship’s neck which was decommissioned during Astraeus’ big retrofit, though left in for structural reasons. This was converted into a massive climbing wall by some of the ship’s crew, where some of the more athletically inclined officers aboard indulge their hobby. 

Another was the description of the ship’s massive Arboretum, which is occasionally used for shipboard events and relaxation in addition to studies of various alien flora.

What have been some of the biggest challenges of the last year? 

I put up our Second Officer, Lt. Commander Toryn Raga, for a transfer as First Officer to the newly (re)commissioned USS Ronin, a post in which I hear he’s been excelling! Our loss is the Ronin’s gain, and I’m delighted that Captain Karrod Niac has gotten such a great officer and person to serve as his First Officer!

What have been some of the most memorable moments? 

Joining a new ship which is involved in an action heavy mission right out of the Academy as a new Ensign can be a challenging situation, and the first thing that comes to mind is the excellent performance of some of our newest members during our last mission, including Ensign Charles Matthews, Ensign Sylvie Doucet, and Ensign Christopher Caldwell, who all wrote what I felt were very realistic portrayals of relatively inexperienced officers thrust into more prominent roles.

Also writing a very neat arc for his character was Lt. Commander Esa Kiax, who was partially altered by ancient nanites from the Chon, an ancient race which once inhabited the Par’tha Expanse. Matt, Esa’s player, did a great job of portraying her willingness to put herself in danger to help her crew, as well as the consequences of that decision.

What plans do you have for Mei and his ship for the upcoming year?

Delano: Further shenanigans with the Valcarian Imperial Republic will be upcoming, along with what I’m hoping will be many scientific discoveries, medical and diplomatic decisions, and a whole lot of creativity from my crew!

Thanks for your time, Captain Delano!

Delano: Thank you as well, and take care!
You can read more about Captain Mei’konda Delano on the wiki.

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