Nichelle Nichols performed a key function in serving to others stay lengthy and prosper.
After information broke that the “Star Trek” icon died Saturday in Silver Metropolis, New Mexico, on the age of 89, tributes to the pioneering actor flooded social media.
One among these salutes was by comic Ashley Nicole Black, who tweeted that Nichols’ “beautiful legacy” was an instance of “what it really means to use the platform you have to make the world a better place.”
“I think of her example often and I hope others will too,” Black wrote earlier than providing an precise instance of how Nichols’ choices helped others purpose for the celebs.
Black tweeted a clip from a “Drunk History” episode she narrated about Nichols’ life.
Within the 2018 clip, Raven-Symoné performs Nichols in a reenactment of the well-known second wherein Martin Luther King Jr. helped Nichols notice how a lot her function as Lt. Nyota Uhura — who was the communications officer on the Starship Enterprise within the unique “Star Trek” TV sequence — meant to Black People.
Within the clip, Black tipsily paraphrased that Nichols was fascinated about quitting “Star Trek” proper earlier than attending an NAACP fundraiser that Nichols and King each attended. On the occasion, King gushed about “Star Trek” to Nichols and informed the actor she couldn’t stop the present as a result of, as Black paraphrased:
“’You are the only Black woman on television who doesn’t play a servant. You’re the only person out there providing hope to Black people that there’s a future where maybe they won’t be seen as less than, and they’ll be seen as equals”
Nichols shared the story of her interplay with King as properly throughout a 2011 episode of PBS’ “Pioneers in Television.”
“He was telling me why I could not [resign],” she recalled on the present in 2011. “He said I had the first nonstereotypical role, I had a role with honor, dignity and intelligence. He said, ‘You simply cannot abdicate. This is an important role. This is why we are marching. We never thought we’d see this on TV.’”
The “Drunk History” clip additionally covers how Nichols made historical past in November 1968, when her “Star Trek” character kissed Capt. James T. Kirk, performed by white actor William Shatner — which is commonly credited because the first interracial kiss on American tv.
Black touches on how Nichols devoted many years of her life to advocating for area exploration as properly, significantly amongst ladies and minorities.
Nichols launched a advisor agency, Girls in Movement, which partnered with NASA to recruit minority and feminine personnel for the area company. Her recruits included Guion Bluford, the primary African American astronaut in area; Sally Experience, the primary feminine American astronaut; and Mae Jemison, the primary Black girl to journey into area.
“So, Nichelle Nichols was the first Black lady to go to space for fake, and she recruited the first Black lady to go to space for real,” Black defined on “Drunk History,” including: “She literally integrated space.”
It additionally appears that Nichols was a fan of the “Drunk History” tribute to her life.
“She reached out to the show after it aired to say she was pleased with it,” Black tweeted.