It is with great sadness that the 8daysageek staff would like to wish a fond farewell to one of the most beloved science fiction actors of all-time. Leonard Nimoy, best known for his role as the iconic Vulcan science officer Mr. Spock on the original Star Trek series, passed away Friday morning at the age of 83. Mr. Nimoy brought joy to the lives of fans for over sixty years, making his Hollywood debut in 1951 and taking on the role that would shape his career and inspire millions of fans to be more logical, that of the lone alien aboard the Starship Enterprise, Mr. Spock, in 1966. Although the show only aired for three seasons, Leonard Nimoy crafted a character that will live forever in the hearts of geeks like myself and his multitude of fans around the world. He was an actor of stage and screen, a director, an armed forces veteran, a husband, a father, a grandfather, a great-grandfather, and an inspiration to every person who ever dreamed to “boldly go where no man has gone before”.
I was raised watching Star Trek the Next Generation by a father who grew up watching the original. I recall staying up late on weeknights over the summer to watch re-runs of that original series that enthralled my father enough, that twenty years later, he would share his love of the show with my brothers and I by watching the weekly airings of Next Generation with us. Those memories, truth be told, are some of the fondest memories of my childhood and Leonard Nimoy is one of the principal factors in that. Without Mr. Nimoy, would Star Trek have gained the cult following it developed after the show ceased airing episodes in 1969? Would Star Trek have made its way to the big screen in 1979? Would Star Trek the Next Generation ever have been produced? Would J.J. Abrams-one of the foremost science fiction producers of this generation-have rebooted the show for the theater in 2009? A world where those events never occurred is a sad proposition to envision. A world without Leonard Nimoy is an even sadder one to envision. Partly because of the work of this amazing actor, we only have to suffer through the latter of those two scenarios.
When Mr. Spock gave his life to save James Kirk in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Captain Kirk eulogized him using these words…
“We are assembled here today to pay final respects to our honored dead. And yet it should be noted, in the midst of our sorrow, this death takes place in the shadow of new life, the sunrise of a new world; a world that our beloved comrade gave his life to protect and nourish. He did not feel this sacrifice a vain or empty one, and we will not debate his profound wisdom at these proceedings. Of my friend, I can only say this: Of all the souls I have encountered in my travels, his was the most….human.”
I don’t fancy myself to be as eloquent as the writers who crafted those words for the screen. This is why the only words I feel can truly end this farewell are those of Mr. Spock himself.
“Live long and prosper”
You truly did, Mr. Nimoy. You truly did.
We will miss you.