George Takei Recalls Close Friendship With Late ‘Star Trek’ Actress Nichelle Nichols


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George Takei has shared a story reflecting his close friendship with ‘Star Trek’ actor Nichelle Nichols, who died at 89 over the weekend.

The 85-year-old actor wrote a tribute via Facebook to honor the late actress, noting how she supported Takei and her husband during their 2008 wedding.

“When my husband Brad and I got married, we asked Walter Koenig, who played Ensign Chekov on the show, to be our best man at the wedding,” he wrote Monday. “We asked Nichelle to be our matron of honor.”

“In her characteristic way, Nichelle said, ‘I’m not a matron! If Walter can be the best man, why can’t I be the best lady?” added Takei. “Noticing that Walter’s ‘best man’ title implied the awkward title of ‘best woman’, she was determined to be known as the ‘best lady’ to the guests.”

‘Star Trek’ star Nichelle Nichols has died aged 89. The actress was known for her role as Lieutenant Nyota Uhura.
(Getty Images)

‘STAR TREK’ ACTRESS NICHELLE NICHOLS DEAD AT 89

Nichols was best known on “Star Trek” for playing Nyota Uhura on the original 1966-69 broadcast. Additionally, she made cameo appearances in the series’ films from the late ’70s to 1991. She died of natural causes on Sunday.

“I told him, ‘Of course you are.’ I share here a photo of Nichelle, with us, as the ‘best lady’ of our happy day,” Takei noted while sharing photos of the two of them together.

Takei concluded her tribute by saying, “While fans will miss and honor the famous actress who blazed so many trails with her on-screen presence, I will also miss the dear friend who always let you know that she was there to support you, to love you, and to walk through this weird and wonderful life by your side. Nichelle Nichols, you were one in a million in so many ways.

Nichelle Nichols (left, as Uhura), Canadian actor William Shatner (as Captain James T. Kirk) holds a plaque on the deck of the USS Enterprise in a scene from 'The Man Trap', the first episode of ''Star Trek, '' which aired September 8, 1966. Behind them, Leonard Nimoy (as Mr. Spock) stands at a doorway.

Nichelle Nichols (left, as Uhura), Canadian actor William Shatner (as Captain James T. Kirk) holds a plaque on the deck of the USS Enterprise in a scene from ‘The Man Trap’, the first episode of ”Star Trek, ” which aired September 8, 1966. Behind them, Leonard Nimoy (as Mr. Spock) stands at a doorway.
(CBS Photo Archive)

Other costars, such as William Shatner, who starred as Captain James T. Kirk alongside Nichols, also paid tribute to the late actress following her death. “I am so sorry to learn of Nichelle’s passing. She was a beautiful woman and played an admirable character who did so much to redefine social issues here in the United States and around the world. I will definitely miss her. Sending my love and condolences to his family.”

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Shatner and Nichols made television history in 1968 when they shared the first televised interracial kiss during the third season of “Star Trek.”

Prior to her death, Nichols struggled with health for several years, including in 2015 when she suffered a minor stroke. At the time of her death, she suffered from dementia.

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