Monday, May 4, 2015

There But for Grace Lee Whitney (1930-2015)

Although she was in only the first eight episodes of the original Star Trek series in 1966, Grace Lee Whitney's Yeoman Janice Rand is as much a beloved part of the storied franchise as are its classic seven cast members – and Majel Barrett Roddenberry.

So much so, in fact, that Whitney reunited with her onscreen family several times, making cameo appearances as Rand in Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984), Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986), and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991).

Perhaps Whitney's greatest role is that of survivor of alcohol and drug addiction. After several long years of battling her dreadful demons, Whitney, with the help of fellow late Star Trek actor Leonard Nimoy, finally emerged victorious, ultimately serving as a role model and mentor for others suffering the same afflictions.

You can find out more about this remarkable, aptly named lady at her IMDb page: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0926298/?ref_=nv_sr_1.

--Raj Manoharan

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