Sad news for Star Trek fans and true Trekkies as Don Marshall has passed away. The actor is perhaps best known for playing Lt. Boma on the original sci-fi series. He was also known for playing a recurring role on the series Land of the Giants.
Don Marshall died this past Sunday in Los Angeles, Variety reports. He passed at the age of 80, with his death being confirmed by fellow Star Trek actor BarBara Luna, who reported the news on Facebook. Marshall was with his family, his son, daughter and twin brother Doug Marshall at the time of his passing. The man is said to have died peacefully.
Though he only appeared on one Star Trek episode, he made quite the impression playing Lt. Boma. The character was featured in the 1967 episode 'The Galileo Seven'. Around this same time, he became known to TV audiences as Dan Erickson on the sci-fi drama Land of the Giants, which resonated with its late 1960s era message of hope.
Don Marshall also made waves playing one of Diahann Carroll's boyfriends on the groundbreaking series Julia. Over the past couple of decades, he also appeared on a number of iconic TV shows including Bewitched and Little House on the Prairie. He was no stranger to genre fare, having played characters on The Incredible Hulk and The Bionic Woman.
The actor had previously stated how grateful he was to land the role of Lt. Boma on Star Trek, because at the time there wasn't a whole lot of opportunities for African-American actors. Here's what he had to say to StarTrek.com.
"There weren't that many jobs, guest starring jobs, for African-Americans or any minorities, really. I was very grateful to get the opportunities I got, and it made me work very hard on each part, to make sure that whatever I was doing was right and that the characters I played were very strong people. I tried to bring out the best in the person I played."
A San Diego native, Don Marshall first set out to become an engineer but was soon bit by the acting bug. He made his start in the business with a couple of memorable film roles, appearing in the cult classic The Thing with Two Heads, and starring alongside Sidney Poitier and Bill Cosby in the classic Uptown Saturday Night. He often mentioned in interviewers before his passing that he was working on a remake of Land of the Giants. Our thoughts go out to his friends and family in their time of /garry-marshall-dead-rip-happy-days-creator/grief.