‘Star Trek’ cast member recovering from stroke

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‘Star Trek’ cast member recovering from stroke


NEW YORK - Nichelle Nichols, who played Lt. Nyota Uhura in the original “Star Trek’’ TV series and in follow-up films, is recovering from a stroke suffered Wednesday at her Los Angeles home.

Tests indicate the stroke was mild, her booking manager, Zachery McGinnis, said Friday. He said the 82-year-old actress began therapy Friday.

“She is awake, eating, in good spirits and able to have full conversations,’’ McGinnis said.

Nichols’ role on “Star Trek’’ earned her accolades for breaking stereotypes of black actresses, with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. personally encouraging her to stay with the series. She met him at a civil rights gathering in 1967, at a point when she had decided not to return for the show’s second season.

“He said, ‘You cannot do that,’’’ Nichols recalled. “You’ve changed the face of television forever, and therefore, you’ve changed the minds of people,’’ she said the civil rights leader told her.

During the show’s third season, her character and William Shatner’s Capt. James Kirk shared what was described as the first interracial kiss to be broadcast on a U.S. television series. In the episode, their characters, who had always maintained a platonic relationship, were forced into the kiss by aliens who were controlling their actions.

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