Sad, sad news. I had a bad feeling a few days ago when I read a story that Leonard Nimoy was ill.
Leonard Nimoy died today at the age of 83 after battling COPD. In an interview on Piers Morgan roughly a year ago, Nimoy disclosed that he had been diagnosed with COPD. His voice was more gravelly than usual and several times he had to stop and clear his voice. It was obvious he was in a deep stage of it. If you watch the video, you will notice that he has an oxygen apparatus on the table in front of him, but that he was able to talk several minutes without it.
He spoke about smoking. He smoked at least two packs a day, calling himself an “Olympic championship smoker,” talked about how when he was in the military, representatives from the tobacco industry actually gave away cigarettes to the soldiers, talked about the old Camel doctor ads. He also quit 30 years ago, but he was one of the unlucky ones who still developed COPD.
Nimoy’s message: “It’s not too early to quit. The damage is being done right now to your lung cells.” Don’t wait five years, don’t wait 10 years. Quit now.
In the Piers Morgan interview, he said his initial reaction after being diagnosed was dismay.
“This is unfair. I quit a long time ago. Why is this happening to me?” Nimoy said.
It is unfair. Nimoy spent the last year or so of his life speaking out against tobacco and smoking. He had a goof life, cut short too soon, but lived it well.
I think as kids, Mr. Spock was everyone’s favourite character on Star Trek. He was certainly the most interesting. I can’t watch the old episodes without busting up laughing at the cheesy dialogue and William Shatner’s even cheesier acting. All that being said, Spock and Nimoy still bring a dignity to the show that has held up over the years.
Leonard’s final Tweet, a few days before he died:
A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP (Live Long and Prosper)