This past weekend we said goodbye to a person I looked up to for a long time. Leonard Nimoy passed away on the morning of Febuary 27th. He was a cultural icon for many by taking on the role as Spock in the tv show Star Trek. While Star Trek only lasted for 3 season it helped spark the imagination of many and open up the thoughts of the future and taking care of the needs of the many. Gene Rodenberry, the creator of Star Trek, created a future where people of all races and creeds, genders and even worlds would be able to work together. Their goals of exploration and science over greed and self indulgence helped many nerds, including myself, to want to become scientists and care for the future of man-kind.
I remember growing up watching Star Trek, my first real immersion into the stories was with Star Trek Voyager back in the fifth grade. Quickly I began to watch them all from the Original Series to Deep Space 9. Since the beginning Vulcans and Trills were always my favorite species. Vulcans were logical and emotionless, the ability to make the most logical decision with out fear or concern of self. It was this attitude to life that made them very interesting to watch and pay attention to when onscreen.
Spock was no exception, if anything he was the basis for all of it. Leonard Nimoy helped create the Vulcans personality (lack there of), the Vulcan salute, and need the eyebrow lift. Even after the original series ended, several movies were made in where Mr. Nimoy reprised the role as Spock, most recently in the 2013 Star Trek movie. Not only did he partake in the movies but also in the Star Trek video games, Star Trek Online is a mmorpg that lets you dive into the Galaxy and explore. The narration for the game is that of Leanord Nimoy and it helped legitimize and make it really feel like being apart of the Federation. There were many crossovers and spoofs, the Simpsons and Big Bang Theory especially, with Leanord Nimoy and Spock and I enjoyed everyone of them.
Playing a character for 47 years is a legacy in of itself but Mr. Nimoy was also well known as a poet, author, artist, director, songwriter and ofcourse actor in many other roles. In his autobiographies; “I am not Spock” and “I am Spock” explained his love/hate relationship with Spock and then his eventual merging of souls. Spock wouldn’t be Spock without Leanord Nimoy and the reverse. Spock was an Ambassador in the Star Trek cannon and Leanord Nimoy was an Ambassador of the arts and humanities. I started following Mr. Nimoy on Twitter almost as soon as he joined and began writing. Many of his posts were poems of his and they were very unique and beautiful. His last tweet was even more meaningful as his last words; “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP”.
I was randomly on Twitter when I saw the broadcast of Mr. Nimoys passing and immediately started looking for more information. It did take me a while to accept the fact that Spock was gone and that there will not be a Search for Spock. All weekend I watched the Star Trek movies and logged ingame to Star Trek Online. In the game many others were signing on to pay their respects and players were gathering at the shrine on Vulcan. Many saying “Live Long and Prosper.” I read the chat for a while to hear the stories of others and what he meant to them. For me it was personally touching and helped me think about several things in my life. NASA even published several posts and videos thanking and missing Leanord Nimoy for his work.
That weekend I was upset and depressed thinking about my future and the decisions I have made. Even though the passing of Mr. Nimoy was upsetting it made me think about what kind of future I want and how I can help man kind. Those were strong beliefs I had back since the 5th grade and they are coming back to me. My love of science has always been around but it stronger than ever now and so is my path to help others before myself.
Mr. Nimoy was one of the most influential men of our time inspiring many to become scientists, explorers, and astronauts. He inspired me in many ways and always will be remembered. I will make sure my future children and family members watch his role as Spock so they can be inspired as well. Personally I feel for the children of the future because they won’t be able to be in the presence of a visionary but glad to know his writings and Spock will live on. Live Long and Prosper Ambassador!