Death of Nichelle Nichols sparks tributes from Star Trek stars
George Takei and JJ Abrams joined the main characters of the “Star Trek” franchise to pay tribute to Nichelle Nichols. The actress, who portrayed the able and commanding Enterprise crewman Nyota Uhura, died Saturday night at the age of 89. Nichols portrayed Uhura in the original series and the first six “Trek” films. She also voiced the character in Star Trek: The Animated Series.
“Last night my mother, Nichelle Nichols, died of natural causes,” Nichols’ son, Kyle Johnson, wrote in a statement on the actress’ official Facebook page. “However, like the ancient galaxies now being seen for the first time, their light will remain for us and future generations to enjoy, learn from and be inspired by. Her life was well lived and as such a role model for all of us.”
Nichols’ “Star Trek” co-star George Takei, who portrayed Hikaru Sulu in the original series and films, was one of the first voices to pay tribute to the actress.
“I’ll have more to say about the groundbreaking, incomparable Nichelle Nichols, who served as Lt. Uhura from the USS Enterprise shared the bridge with us,” Takei wrote. “For today my heart is heavy, my eyes shine like the stars under which you now rest, my dearest friend.”
I’ll have more to say about the groundbreaking, incomparable Nichelle Nichols, who served as Lt. Uhura of the USS Enterprise shared the bridge with us and died today at the age of 89. For today my heart is heavy, my eyes shine like the stars under which you now rest, my dearest friend.
— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) July 31, 2022
Celia Rose Gooding, who plays Uhura in the new Paramount+ series Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, paid tribute to the actress who created the role.
Farewell, legend 🕊✨🤍 pic.twitter.com/OdKjlCtB69
— ALIEN SUPERSTAR CRG (@celiargooding) July 31, 2022
Georgian politician and die-hard “Trek” fan Stacey Abrams shared a photo of her and Nichols, praising the star as a “champion, warrior and great actor.”
One of my most treasured photos – Godspeed to Nichelle Nichols, champion, warrior and amazing actress. Her kindness and courage paved the way for many. May she dwell among the stars forever. #RIPNichelle #Uhura pic.twitter.com/nFXHif8HEC
— Stacey Abrams (@staceyabrams) July 31, 2022
“Star Trek: Voyager” star Kate Mulgrew called Nichols a “pioneer who walked a very challenging path with courage, grace and a beautiful fire that we’re unlikely to see again.”
Nichelle Nichols was the first. She was a trailblazer, navigating a very challenging path with courage, grace, and a beautiful fire that we’re unlikely to see again.
May she rest in peace. #NichelleNichols pic.twitter.com/DONSz6IV2b
— Kate Mulgrew (@TheKateMulgrew) July 31, 2022
JJ Abrams, who directed the 2009 reboot of Star Trek and the 2013 sequel Star Trek Into Darkness, called Nichols “a remarkable woman in a remarkable role.”
A remarkable woman in a remarkable role. Nichelle, you are greatly missed. Send lots of love and respect. pic.twitter.com/ZRnMblXx0Z
— JJ Abrams (@jjabrams) July 31, 2022
Marina Sirtis, who portrayed Counselor Deanna Troi in Star Trek: The Next Generation and its four feature film adaptations, explained that Nichols “opened the door for the rest of us.”
REST IN PEACE @NichelleIsUhura. You led the way and opened the door for the rest of us to follow. We will be forever grateful. My heart is broken💔😢
— Marina Sirtis (@Marina_Sirtis) July 31, 2022
Lynda Carter, who portrayed Wonder Woman in the 1970s DC Comics television series, shared that Nichols “showed us the extraordinary power of black women and paved the way for a brighter future for all women in media.”
Many actors become stars, but few stars can move a nation. Nichelle Nichols showed us the extraordinary power of black women and paved the way for a brighter future for all women in media. Thank you, Nichelle. We will miss you. pic.twitter.com/KhUf4YM6pX
— Lynda Carter (@RealLyndaCarter) July 31, 2022
Alex Kurtzman, who serves as senior executive producer on the ongoing “Star Trek” shows for Paramount+, called Nichols a “unique inspiration” and spoke of the countless people he’s met who see the actress as inspiration for a career in science, writing, education and entertainment.
Nichelle was a unique inspiration. She’s the one who really opened my eyes to what Star Trek is and can be. I can’t tell you how many people have told me that she is the reason they became… an astronaut, a scientist, a writer, a linguist, an engineer… 1/2
— Alex Kurtzman (@Alex_Kurtzman) July 31, 2022
See more tributes to Nichols below:
My love for the original Star Trek runs deep. Throughout her life, Nichelle Nichols has been a trailblazer and glorious ambassador for her show, her role, and her science. And a really lovely person. May she have a wonderful adventure to the last frontier.#ripnichellenichol
— Jason Alexander (@IJasonAlexander) July 31, 2022
REST IN PEACE #Nichellenichole You were a wonderful pioneer on earth as you were in space. xo ✨ pic.twitter.com/qhZ5tujAXs
— Kim Cattrall (@KimCattrall) July 31, 2022
Thank you for giving so many of us a place in the universe. #NichelleNichols pic.twitter.com/TycRdKOOfH
— Tawny “My name is Tawny” Newsome (@TrondyNewman) July 31, 2022
Celebrating the life of Nichelle Nichols, Star Trek actress, pioneer and role model who symbolized for so many what was possible. She partnered with us to recruit some of the first minority astronauts and inspired generations to reach for the stars. pic.twitter.com/pmQaKDb5zw
— NASA (@NASA) July 31, 2022
Nichelle Nichols told us we belonged in space. We are limitless. The sky got an uhura today.
— Colman Domingo (@colmandomingo) July 31, 2022
https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/nichelle-nichols-dies-reactions-tributes-star-trek-1235330185/ Death of Nichelle Nichols sparks tributes from Star Trek stars