Majel Barrett Roddenberry, the widow of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry and the only actor to appear in all incarnations of the landmark sci-fi series, was remembered Sunday at a memorial service in Los Angeles.
In tribute to the Roddenberry spirit, Celestis Memorial Spaceflights will launch the ashes of both Mr. and Mrs. Roddenberry into space in 2012. Also, as reported by TrekMovie.com (which also has a lot of great photos from the public service), the family is making a contribution to the San Diego Zoo for what will become the “Majel Barrett-Roddenberry Tiger Maternity Ward.”
From Dec. 18, 2008:
R.I.P. Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, ‘First Lady of Star Trek’
Recently we reported that she is reprising her role as the voice of the Enterprise computer in J.J. Abrams’ upcoming feature film, also titled Star Trek.
A fan favorite, Barrett appeared in the very first Star Trek pilot “The Cage” as the Enterprise’s first officer — a role that NBC executives were reportedly uncomfortable giving to a woman in 1964. When the series was retooled, Barrett went on to play Nurse Chapel instead.
Associated Press file
Barrett and Roddenberry wed in 1969 after Star Trek was canceled. When the show’s first spinoff, Star Trek: The Next Generation, debuted in 1987, she provided the computer voice but also found a new role: Betazoid Ambassador Lwaxana Troi, the mother of Enterprise Counselor Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis). The character’s romantic pursuit of Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) was an ongoing source of comic relief. She reprised the character on the spinoff Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and continued to voice the computers on Star Trek: Voyager and some episodes of Star Trek: Enterprise.
Barrett-Roddenberry recently had been battling leukemia. Her husband died in 1991.
She joins original Trek star Leonard Nimoy as the only (so far) returning actors in Abrams’ project. She will be remembered as a graceful woman and a standout actor who brought fun to the franchise her husband created.