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The Beautiful Nichelle Nichols

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

I was watching a classic episode of Star Trek: The Original Series the other day, and it hit me like a photon torpedo – I'm going to miss seeing Nichelle Nichols grace the screen as Lieutenant Uhura. As a lifelong Star Trek fan, I felt compelled to write this tribute to honor the beautiful actress who brought such depth and inspiration to her iconic role.


My admiration for Nichelle Nichols goes beyond her portrayal of Lieutenant Uhura. I was captivated by her talent, grace, and trailblazing spirit that transcended the boundaries of television and science fiction.



Firstly, I cannot emphasize enough the impact of her ground-breaking role as Lieutenant Uhura. As a black woman, Nichols broke barriers and shattered stereotypes by portraying a strong, intelligent, and respected character during a time when racial equality was still a distant dream. Through Uhura's character, she challenged the status quo and paved the way for future generations of actors and actresses of color.

Not only was Nichelle Nichols a pioneer in the entertainment industry, but she was also an inspiration to countless fans around the world. Through her portrayal of Uhura, she showed us that diversity and inclusivity were not just buzzwords, but something to be celebrated and embraced. She encouraged us to dream of a future where people of all backgrounds could work together in harmony, just like the diverse crew of the Starship Enterprise.


Beyond her on-screen contributions, Nichols used her platform to make a real impact off-screen as well. I cannot forget the story of how she almost left Star Trek after the first season, only to be convinced to stay by none other than Martin Luther King Jr. He recognized the importance of her role and the influence it had on breaking down racial barriers. Her decision to stay not only enabled her to continue inspiring others but also allowed her to become an advocate for NASA and help recruit the first African-American astronauts.


Nichols' talent extended beyond acting. She had a beautiful singing voice and released several albums throughout her career. Her performances showcased her versatility and added yet another layer to her multi-faceted talent.


As I reflect on the impact Nichelle Nichols had on my life, I can't help but feel grateful for the doors she opened and the boundaries she pushed. She showed me that being a fan of Star Trek meant more than just enjoying a TV show; it meant embracing a philosophy of hope, unity, and the limitless potential of humanity.




Nichols met then-President Barack Obama at the Oval Office in 2012, and he joined her in flashing the Vulcan salute for the camera.
Nichols met then-President Barack Obama at the Oval Office in 2012, and he joined her in flashing the Vulcan salute for the camera.

Nichelle Nichols met with President Obama in the Oval Office back in February 2012, during a visit to Washington DC, to speak at a NASA event. During the meeting, the President expressed his admiration for her character, Lieutenant Uhura, and admitted to having had a childhood crush on her. The two even gave the Vulcan salute, a gesture made famous by the Star Trek franchise. Nichols later shared a photo of the encounter on social media, much to the delight of fans everywhere


Image of Nichelle Nichols goes to outer space in 2015, taking off with NASA aboard the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA).
Nichelle Nichols goes to outer space in 2015, taking off with NASA aboard the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA).

In conclusion, I will forever miss seeing Nichelle Nichols grace the screen as Lieutenant Uhura in Star Trek. Her portrayal of this iconic character broke barriers, inspired millions, and paved the way for a more inclusive and diverse entertainment industry. Beyond her role, Nichols was a trailblazer, an advocate, and a beacon of hope. Her impact on both the fictional world of Star Trek and the real world will continue to be felt for generations to come.


Thank you, Nichelle Nichols, for being my beloved Star Trek icon.

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