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Leonard Nimoy Dies at Age 83

by Photo of April Baptiste-Brown

Star Trek’s Mr. Spock lived a long and prosperous life.

Leonard Nimoy Dies at Age 83

Leonard Nimoy, most notably known for his iconic role as Mr. Spock in the original Star Trek franchise, passed away at age 83.

His family confirmed that the actor died from end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an illness that Nimoy battled decades after he had given up smoking. Nimoy was hospitalized and passed on at his home in Bel Air, California.

Though he starred in dozens of television shows at the beginning of his career, Nimoy's breakout role came in 1966 through the television series Star Trek as Mr. Spock, the half-human, half-Vulcan first officer of the USS Enterprise. Playing alongside William Shatner as Captain James T. Kirk, the show lasted for 3 seasons, fostered several spin-offs, lead to over a dozen movies (eight of which Nimoy was in), and made Mr. Spock into a household name. 

With such iconic phrases as "Live Long and Prosper" and "I have been -- and always shall be -- your friend", Mr. Spock became one of the most beloved characters in the sci-fi universe.

However, Star Trek was not the only facet of Leonard Nimoy's life. He wanted to break away from the pretext that he was only defined by his role in the Star Trek franchise, and actively showed that in the other aspects of his career. Nimoy published eleven books over the course of his life including "I Am Not Spock" (1975), "I Am Spock" (1995) and several books of poetry. He also had several directorial bouts including the 1980's hit comedy 3 Men and a Baby starring Tom Selleck and Steve Guttenburg, as well as the third and fourth Star Trek films.

Later in his career, Nimoy's notoriety as Spock transcended in other opportunities. Appearances and voice overs on several television shows and films such as The Simpsons and Transformers: Dark of the Moon, and a reoccurring role on the sci-fi drama Fringe kept Nimoy quite active. 

When the Star Trek franchise was rebooted in 2009 by director J.J. Abrams, the actor got to reprise his role as Spock Prime with the newly casted Zachary Quinto as the younger Spock. He again played Spock in the sequel Star Trek: Into Darkness and the two Spocks even collaborated on a full-length Audi commercial mocking their Star Trek relationship.

Nimoy also frequently took to various social media platforms and always ended his Tweets with Mr. Spock's iconic sign-off of LLAP (Live Long and Prosper). His final tweet earlier this week was just as poetic as the life he had lived. It read, "A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP"

Leonard Nimoy is survived by his wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, his children, Adam and Julie Nimoy, six grandchildren, various other family members and generations of followers who will certainly keep his memory alive. Live Long and Prosper indeed.

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