William Shatner sold his kidney stone for thousands
Shat did it for the greater good.
William Shatner is many things. He's best known as an actor. But the Shat sings, too. Oh, yes. He's directs, as well. Captain Kirk was at the helm of the Enterprise and the production as director of Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. William Shatner is an author, too. He's written about a dozen nonfiction works, including several books about his life and his time as Kirk. Then, there's the TekWar novel series and all its adaptations, telling the 22nd-century story of a cop framed for selling "Tek," a mind-altering drug that creates simulated realities.
Shatner has been a horse breeder, a wrestling manager, a Priceline spokesperson, a producer, and the oldest person to visit space. But of all the multihyphenate's many identities, the most telling of who William Shatner is as a person is his work as a philanthropist. It's clear straight away that Shatner has an earnest love for horses. Beginning in 1990, he hosted the yearly Hollywood Charity Horse Show, which raised money for charities benefiting kids. As producer and host, Shatner helped raise millions for programs such as the afterschool enrichment program L.A.'s BEST, the Children's Museum of Los Angeles, and a developmental therapy nonprofit called Ahead with Horses.
Habitat for Humanity is another of Shatner's favorite organizations, and he once raised money for them in a much more unorthodox manner. In 2006, the Shat sold his kidney stone to GoldenPalace.com for $75,000. The online casino paid the handsome fee after Shatner drove a hard bargain. GoldenPalace initially offered $15,000, which Shatner politely declined.
"I turned down their initial offer of $15,000," Shatner told CanWest News Service in 2006. "I turned it down knowing that my tunics from Star Trek have commanded more than $100,000. And it went from $15,000 to $25,000, and then, when this thing got to Calgary, I said, 'Look, even Calgary's talking about it, give me $75,000.'"
The figure was no arbitrary sum; William Shatner knew how much it would cost Habitat for Humanity to build a house.
"I said to [GoldenPalace.com], look you're getting more publicity than you ever imagined," said Shatner. "And they upped it to $75,000. It's amazing. And then with the $20,000 that the [Boston Legal] cast had raised as a Christmas gift, it gave us $95,000, which is enough to buy an entire house for Habitat for Humanity, and they're constructing it at the lot. They're going to send us pictures of developments on the way and then eventually of the family that will be residing there."
A 2006 article from GoldenPalace's website stated the business intended to tour the calcified piece of TV history. "We are confident that this will be our most enterprising advertising campaign to date with the Captain on board," said CEO Richard Rowe.