Leonard Nimoy, the actor, author and director best known for his portrayal of the ultra-logical character Spock in the TV series Star Trek, has died at the age of 83.
His wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, confirmed to the New York Times that her husband died Friday morning at their Los Angeles home of end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Nimoy said last year that he had been diagnosed with lung disease and was “doing OK.”
Nimoy’s poignant last tweet, sent on Feb. 22, reads, “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory.”
“I loved him like a brother,” co-star William Shatner said Friday. “We will all miss his humour, his talent, and his capacity to love.”
Co-star George Takei shared his condolences on Facebook Friday afternoon.
“Today, the world lost a great man, and I lost a great friend. We return you now to the stars, Leonard … I shall miss you in so many, many ways,” he wrote.
“Leonard Nimoy truly did live long and prosper. To celebrate his life and work, let us share in some of his best moments as the character we all took into our hearts, Mr. Spock.”
The character’s well-known Vulcan proverb “Live long and prosper” as well as Nimoy’s trademark Vulcan salute helped cement him as a pop culture icon.
His half-human, half-Vulcan character was the calm counterpoint to Shatner’s often-emotional Captain Kirk on one of television and film’s most revered cult series.
“He affected the lives of many,” Adam Nimoy said. “He was also a great guy and my best friend.”
Asked if his father chafed at his fans’ close identification of him with his character, Adam Nimoy said, “Not in the least. He loved Spock.”
However, Nimoy’s ambivalence to the role was reflected in the titles of his two autobiographies, I Am Not Spock (1975) and I Am Spock (1995).