Leonard Nimoy, who rose to fame as Spock on the sci-fi series “Star Trek,” died Friday morning at his Los Angeles home, the New York Times reports. He was 83.
The actor was hospitalized last week after firefighters responded to a medical call at his home, according to various media reports. Nimoy was reportedly suffering severe chest pains, and was rushed to the UCLA Medical Center. Last year, Nimoy said on Twitter that he was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which he attributed to a smoking habit he had kicked 30 years earlier.
“Grandpa says, quit now!! LLAP,” Nimoy tweeted, the latter phrase being an abbreviation of the Spock catchphrase “Live long and prosper.”
Born in Boston in 1931, Nimoy took up acting as a child, landing his first major role as Ralphie in Clifford Odet’s Awake and Sing at age 17. He later attended drama classes at Boston College. In 1953, he began a stint in the U.S. Army, which would last until 1955. He served as sergeant.
Nimoy appeared in dozens of B movies and numerous television series including “Dragnet,” “Perry Mason,” “Wagon Train,” “Bonanza” and “The Untouchables.” However, it was his role as the half-Vulcan, half-human Spock in the iconic series “Star Trek” that catapulted Nimoy to fame. The hyper-logical Spock became a fan favorite. Though the original series only ran from 1966 to 1969, the show became an enduring classic. Spock’s Vulcan salute and catch-phrases would be repeated uncountable times by “Star Trek” fans for decades.