Thursday, December 18, 2008

Majel Barrett Roddenberry passed away today. Majel was the wife of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and was known as the "First Lady of Star Trek." Of course, Majel had several roles on the various series including Number One in the first Star Trek pilot, Nurse Christine Chapel on the original Star Trek series, Lwaxana Troi on Star Trek: The Next Generation and the voice of numerous Federation computers in various Trek series and movies, including the upcoming Star Trek movie.

I saw Majel at several conventions over the years, but only had one real "close encounter" with her. I worked on a convention in 1986 called the "Platinum Anniversary Convention", in honor of Star Trek's 20th anniversary. Gene and Majel were among the guests that year. After the convention was over, I drove Majel and George (Sulu) Takei to Logan Airport for their flight back to L.A. (Gene was in the middle of working on TNG at the time and had left Sunday night).

George and Majel were chatting in the back seat. I was driving extremely carefully, not wanting to get into an accident with two science fiction legends in the back seat. As we're driving along, George starts talking about Majel's son, Rod, in a very complimentary way, talking about what a good kid he was. Majel eventually piped up with this classic: "Oh, he can be a little shit sometimes!" Very funny, and a really fun memory for me of a person who I had only known through watching on TV to that point.

We'll miss you, Majel. Star Trek won't be the same without you.


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