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Leonard Nimoy Bids Farewell At Final Convention Appearance October 3, 2011

by John Tenuto , Filed under: Conventions/Events/Attractions,Nimoy , trackback

Sunday marked the end of era. Star Trek’s Leonard Nimoy appeared at his last convention at the Chicago Creation Star Trek con. As of now Leonard Nimoy is officially retired (again). See below for a report from the event, with pictures.

 

Nimoy bids farewell

Leonard Nimoy bid goodbye to the world of conventions on October 2, 2011, at Creation Entertainment’s Official 45th Anniversary Star Trek Convention in Rosemont, Illinois. His final con appearance began with a surprise video assembled by Creation Entertainment featuring all seven of the main stars of Star Trek (2009) and director JJ Abrams sharing memories and good wishes to their costar. Perhaps the best moment was Karl Urban doing his best Dr. McCoy during his tribute. When Leonard Nimoy took to the stage, the audience cheered its own good wishes for the actor who was very much the heart of Star Trek.


Leonard Nimoy bids farewell to conventions at Star Trek Chicago Con 2011

A wonderful presentation followed where Leonard Nimoy shared his life story through words, poetry, and pictures. Especially moving were photos of his days as a young man growing up in Boston. He shared many great experiences, discussing how various people, including Senator John F. Kennedy who was a passenger in his cab, had inspired him with their words and deeds.

When the time arrived for Nimoy to take his leave, he did so with grace and quietly, while the sold out room was filled with fans holding up signs expressing their appreciation for all that Nimoy has done. In a kind gesture, Nimoy asked that a cake be shared with the audience of fans as he signed autographs.


Leonard Nimoy bids farewell to conventions at Star Trek Chicago Con 2011

Leonard Nimoy began attending conventions during their earliest days. He has been Spock for almost 47 years considering the first, unsold pilot. And he has been a consistent and generous convention guest for close to four decades, sharing with fans laughs and tears, jokes and worthy ideas.

He has been, and ever shall be, our friend.


Leonard Nimoy bids farewell to conventions at Star Trek Chicago Con 2011

 

All photos by John Tenuto/TrekMovie

Comments

1. Daniel craigs my wookie bitch now - October 3, 2011

To bad his final convention apperance had to be with Creation.

2. Thomas - October 3, 2011

This sounds like it was a very nice, yet bittersweet time. Is there any chance we may be able to see that video?

3. Polly - October 3, 2011

Ah, he’ll be back :)

4. Captain Andrew Bryce - October 3, 2011

LLAP Mr. Nimoy, and thank you for sharing so much of yourself with us over the years.

5. This Is Me - October 3, 2011

I think he should have departed with, “In the words of an old friend, Get a Life, will you people?”

6. trekker 5 - October 3, 2011

I think he’ll be back!! But if not,how awesome was that farewell?! :)

7. NoRez - October 3, 2011

I remember one of my first cons, late 70s, at the old Statler-Hilton in NYC. We were watching one of the speakers and all of a sudden a door at the back opened and Leonard rushed up to the stage and started speaking about the problems getting the movie (TMP) together. I’ve long forgotten the details but I’m sure more than a few people have a transcript of what he actually said. He was VERY passionate about it and quite incensed at what was going on with it, and my little friends and I were totally blown away. It was fantastic.

When you’re a kid you don’t ever really think far ahead to the time that your heroes will be as old as your grandparents, to the times when things will be ending. I haven’t been an active Trekker in a very long time but I appreciate that Leonard, et al, have been a constant all through the years while exploring other interests and opportunities. They may not be close family, or A close family, but they are…. family. To themselves and to us. I type this just a couple of miles from Leonard’s birthplace and nod a salute to him from my window. L(much)L(er)AP.

8. Jonboc - October 3, 2011

..from an appearance at a mid 70s auto show to a lengthy lecture he gave at university at the time of directing Trek 3, to the numerous cons I’ve seen Nimoy at over the past 3 decades, he has always been a great guest speaker with imaginative presentations, full of intelligence, wit and respect. His presence on the convention circuit will be sorely missed.

9. sk Sexton - October 3, 2011

Huge thanx for these great descriptions of Con experiences with Leonard.
You’ve allowed me to be there. I never have been to a ST Con just never the op.

10. Dee - lvs moon' surface - October 3, 2011

I would love to see that video… I wish the best for Mr. Nimoy!…:-) :-)

11. Red Dead Ryan - October 3, 2011

Creation has control of that video. They’ll probably charge people $10 to view it online.

Anyway, I’ve never gotten the opportunity to see Leonard Nimoy in person. But I can tell he’s a class act and all-around great human being who has accomplished so much. I hope he continues to do guest spots on “Fringe”.

12. Magic_Al - October 3, 2011

47 years. Nice round number.

13. Charla - October 3, 2011

I soooo wanted to go to this particular one! Never been to one either :( but so glad to have had an article on this. Thanks John!

14. Jim Nightshade - October 3, 2011

Salute to Mr Nimoy—besides brilliant acting of not just a but THE iconic scifi tv character-he also had us looking at photography,poetry and music and writinh as outlets for personal growth,sharing with us fans and always returning to spock–our family member–the best thing about trek 09 was nimoy bridging the gap for us fans–jj et al showed great love n respect for spock/nimoy–what a beautiful send off for his character that we all love–i hope he doesnt retire but if he does he is entitled–andy rooney just said his ladt goodbyes on 60 min-truly is end of an era for tv greats-

15. Mongoose hornet - October 3, 2011

I didn’t know were else to post this, and I didn’t see it posted anywhere. Star Trek (2009) is back in IMAX theaters this weeks at most Edwards theaters here in Cali. I just saw it today and it was great! The ticket taker said it will be in most Edwards IMAX until Thursday. Just FYI.

16. Captain Lonestar - October 4, 2011

Mr. Nimoy PLEASE go out with a BANG! As in a cameo on The Big Bang Theory!!!!

17. Faolin - October 4, 2011

Don’t worry kids he will be back next year. He’s been retiring from Star Trek since the end of Star Trek II

18. TrekMadeMeWonder - October 4, 2011

17. Faolin

I agree. More Nimoy please.

19. Seany-Wan - October 4, 2011

As a child of the 70’s & 80’s, it is strange to see all of my tv & film heroes go on into the sunset. I myself am pushing 40 and it is bittersweet to see many earas coming to an end, especailly in the world of Star Trek. The 90’s were a good time to be a fan. Hard to believe that The Undiscovered Country turns 20 this year.Has it really been 20 years since the final voyage of the original crew?

20. Zip - October 4, 2011

Some of us are pushing 40,,, and some of us will never see 50 again…
But We’ll always have CGI (or what ever comes next) Spock will never retire…
For everything you’ve done to and for Trek, Thanks Leonard,

21. rm10019 - October 4, 2011

I have seen Leonard at many conventions and in many interviews and have appreciated the warmth, intelligence and respect he has conveyed for all these years.

22. Robert Paulson - October 4, 2011

Sorry folks, this is just a ploy for more money. If somebody waves enough money under his nose he’ll “unretire” again.

23. MoPed - October 4, 2011

I’ve had the great fortune of seeing Leonard Nimoy at two conventions. LLAP.

24. Bob - October 4, 2011

I had the pleasure of meeting Mr Nimoy when I was a waiter at the McCormick & Schmick’s restaurant in Beverly Hills. He didn’t sit in my section, and I risked getting fired by saying hello, but I did so anyway. (The restaurant’s policy is to not treat celebrities any differently then others in the restaurant as they typically don’t want their meal interrupted.) I politely waited until he and his wife were about to leave when I did take the opportunity to say hello. They were both very kind and gracious. I hope that he enjoys his retirement. He has earned it, but he will definitely be missed at the conventions.

25. chrisfawkes.com - October 4, 2011

The first time Nimoy left it was in the wake of Genesis, this time it was at Creation.

Live long and prosper LN.

26. sherlockfreak - October 4, 2011

As someone who was there, it was wonderful. A happy and very sad time, but totally magical. :) LLAP _\V/

27. j4ckl3 - October 4, 2011

Met him here in Dallas. Very intelligent man. I was honored to have the chance.

28. Duncan MacLeod - October 4, 2011

I was there and it was awesome. Creation was a little snarky about not standing along the back wall (fire code??) by after he came on, they found me a seat in the premium area where people were not in attendance.

29. Kirk's Flying Wig - October 4, 2011

Bye, Leonard (until next time).

30. Starfleet's Finest - October 4, 2011

I only wish I had been there to offer my own well-wishes. Mr. Nimoy is truely one of Starfleet’s finest and his compassion and dedication to Trek over the years is greatly appreicated and will be sorely missed. Thank you for you’re service and for giving myself and so many like me someone to look up to.

LLAP Mr. Nimoy and thank you.

31. DS9 IN PRIME TIME - October 4, 2011

I WAS THERE!!! IT WAS EMOTIONAL!!!

My first convention!! Leonards Last :( Had my picture takin with him, it was a weekend I will never forget!!

32. DS9 IN PRIME TIME - October 4, 2011

@11

Creation’s Volunters were very rude!! Their paid staff were really nice. Creation has some work to do with who they let work the conventions.

33. CmdrR - October 4, 2011

What? 47 years and you’re bored already?

Seriously… Thanks, sir. You set the standard higher.

34. Lt. Bailey - October 4, 2011

Who knows if this is the end or not? There are always possiblities….

Which ever way it goes, I can only wish him well (LLAP) and thank him for all that he has given us fans over the years. I was glad to get a photo Op with him and Shatner together during one Vegas CON, also his autograph. Every day I get dressed, I see his picture and I hear him saying those words to me–LLAP.

35. John from Cincinnati - October 4, 2011

Mr. Leonard Nimoy is an icon.

He is also a very generous and gracious man and sets the highest standard as a human being.

It was an honor to have watched him portray Spock all these years and to have met him in person.

Thank you Mr. Nimoy, you will be greatly missed.

36. Scott - October 4, 2011

Good coverage and well written John. Thanks!

37. T2 - October 4, 2011

I had a great time at this con, and the buzz and anticipation all weekend was unlike any I’ve ever witnessed at a Trek con this side of the Mississippi. It was an honor to attend this goodbye. Thanks, John, for some pics (I was so far back in the room, none of them turned out), as well as your presentations.

Enjoy your 80’s, Mr. Nimoy.

38. DS9 IN PRIME TIME - October 4, 2011

@37

I was there too up close i have some great picts! If trek movie wants them i can email someone so they can post on the website.

39. THX-1138 - October 4, 2011

Just so you know:

Nimoy quoted me at the Vegas con some years back when the speculation was rampant about whether Shatner would be in the 2009 flick. Took it from something I posted right here on this very website. Even did a bit of a riff on it with Shatner. Kinda made my day.

Here’s to you, Timmy!

40. Christopher Roberts - October 4, 2011

Loved Legend Awesome Person.

41. JOHNF.HINSON - October 4, 2011

live long and prosper too! admiral as well as an ambassador to the federation it is a real honor to know that you are the cornerstone of all the star trek empire that we trekkers love and will keep serving on! good morrow to our loved and inspiring gentleman! and god bless you sir! signed john f.hinson U.S.N.RET.

42. The Original Spock's Brain - October 4, 2011

I was lucky to meet him in Houston a few years ago. He always seems genuine. ;-)

43. Milf lover - October 4, 2011

God bless you Mr. Nimoy. You didn’t have to work as long as you did, but you did it because you knew that the nerds needed you. Yes, it’s the truth. You gave your valuable time so that the nerds who can’t get a date had something to look forward to. Mr. Shatner tried to tell them to get a life, but the truth angered the nerds, and they turned on him untill he took it back. Again, bless you Mr. Nimoy, you are a good man.

44. VulcanFilmCritic - October 4, 2011

The first time I saw Leonard Nimoy was in the Coming Attractions issue of TV Guide from September of 1966. I saw at the bottom of the page two men in the kind of outfits that your “hip” uncle wore to sit in the basement and play bongo drums. Slacks and a velour V-neck sweater with a black mock turtleneck underneath. What?

It must be science fiction because the show was called “Star Trek.” But where was their space ship? Where were their space suits? Why were they staring up at us? They didn’t look too friendly!

My eyes immediately went to the Captain, and a very handsome captain he was. Good.
But the guy on the left. What to make of him? He looked like a cross between Peter Pan, the Beatles, and Moe of the Three Stooges. He needed a shave, too. Weird.

Oh well, I tuned into the show (“Charley X”) and there was this strange man again. He looked pretty cool. But when he opened his mouth, this deep, hoarse croak came out. He sounded like he’d been kicked in the throat! This was very distracting. I didn’t want to watch this show because of him! The only reason I stayed was because of Robert Walker, Jr. and the truly amazing Grace Lee Whitney and her impossible hairdo. Very cool.

The weird-looking man was really unfriendly and I didn’t like him at all. That is until he had his legs broken at the end of the show and I shouted at the TV, “Oh, no! Poor Mr. Spock!” Immediate sympathy for this poor, strange alien. And week after week we would be drawn deeper into the strange world of this delightfully complex being.

And so it was with Leonard Nimoy himself. Leonard Nimoy? What kind of actor calls himself that? As I was to find out, a very serious one. Someone who kept his own name, who never denied or tried to hide his Jewish heritage, and who was true to his craft. He gave us a legend. For 45 years no less!

I am grateful that I had the opportunity to see him several times over the years, and my respect and admiration for him has only grown. I can think of no better role model for a kid, and even now for a middle-aged adult. For he continues his creative output. Not just as an actor, writer, director, poet, and musician, but as a photographer. I was wowed by the Secret Selves show and I was honored to spend an evening in a small conference room with a handful of art lovers discussing this project with the man himself. After the photography seminar, we were up ’til midnight discussing Secret Selves. I can’t wait to see what else he has to show us!

Like matter, I guess creativity can neither be created or destroyed, only changed in form.

45. VOODOO - October 4, 2011

Leonard Nimoy is a personal hero of mine for several reasons outside of Star Trek and Mr. Spock… I wish him the best. God Bless!

ps: I am not convinced that we have not seen the last of Nimoy as Spock. I say Abrams wraps up his version of ST with a third film in the series that has at least a cameo w/ Nimoy and Shatner.

46. VulcanFilmCritic - October 4, 2011

@7 NoRez. The transcript of that entire speech to the Star Trek America Convention can be found in the 1977 Leonard Nimoy Association of Fans (LNAF) Yearbook. (You might find a copy at Amazon.com or eBay.)
It was transcribed September 3, 1977 by the president of the LNAF, Louise Stange.
Interesting reading, especially in view of comments made about tensions which arose between Mr. Nimoy and the fans in “The Star Trek Interview Book.” That speech really cleared the air and paved the way for the long-lasting relationship he’s had with the fans ever since.

47. Disinvited - October 4, 2011

Re: #5. This Is Me – October 3, 2011 and #43. Milf lover – October 4, 2011

I was unaware that Mr. Nimoy had an any familiarity with Mr. Smigel whatsoever?

.

48. Gene L. Coon was a U. S. Marine. Stand at ease. - October 4, 2011

47 years.

I have been playing myself for 47 years, come to think of it! Just old enough to (just barely)remember watching Star Trek first run (season 3) with my dad. So, Spock and I go way back.

On a related, nice note, William Shatner was the top Yahoo “trending now”story for awhile today. Whenever I see either Nimoy’s or Shatner’s name in the news, I fear the worst. But then I saw Shatner’s smiling puss, and all was well.

Enjoy them now.

49. Aaron - October 4, 2011

Mr. Nimoy has affected my life now is so many ways. Not only has he inspired me to become an actress but has also helped me forge a life long friendship with my best friend. Although we didn’t have enough money to afford the convention (being the broke teenagers we are) and we are likely never going to get the chance to get autographs or faint before of our idol we still have had wonderful memory involving the man and for that I would like to thank him.

Thankyou Leonard Nimoy for being such an inspiration to my friend and I.

Sincerely Your Fan;

Aaron

50. BoltBait - October 4, 2011

I feel fortunate to have seen Mr. Nimoy at the Las Vegas convention this year.

My daughter had a picture with him and got his autograph. She was thrilled. She has the photo framed and on her bedroom wall.

He’s such a nice man.

LLAP!

51. matthiasfromgermany - October 4, 2011

Mr. Nimoys poems are great. His book “I am Spock” is fun to read. His photographs are most interesting. He seems to be a wise man with a few hands full of wisdom. I wished only, he would part some of his wisdom one last time in … maybe a short story book or so.

And… thank you, Mr. Nimoy!

LLAP

Matthias

52. Canon Schmanon - October 4, 2011

There’s just no good way to thank Leonard Nimoy for all he gave to me through his performances, interviews, writing, plays, photos, etc. What a superb human being. Thanks, Leonard.

53. Basement Blogger - October 5, 2011

Great piece John. I hope to see Leonard in the next film. After all, he’s got to rebuild the Vulcan race. Regardless, Leonard Nimoy,

“Live long and prosper.”

54. Keachick (rose pinenut) - October 5, 2011

Has anyone seen this? Dee posted this on the Untitled Star Trek IMDb message board, but I just had to share –

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5kgGCBkEASA&feature=player_embedded

#53 At the end of the video, did Chris Pine say something about Leonard Nimoy as “Be seeing you soon”? Hmmm

55. Keachick (rose pinenut) - October 5, 2011

JJ Abrams said at the end, “Leonard Nimoy is to Star Trek what William Shatner is to…?” Can’t quite hear the word. Anyone get it?

I am just wondering when some of this was filmed. Maybe a couple of months ago, before the Rugby World Cup games, and I say this because of the All Blacks jersey that Karl Urban was wearing. What were the three words Karl called Leonard Nimoy? Either my ears are shot, the sound system is shot or both.

56. Andy Patterson - October 5, 2011

Fox news reports on this story. They call him “Dr. ” Spock.
http://video.foxnews.com/v/1200504346001/hollywood-nation-dr-spocks-last-trek-fest

57. Amorican - October 5, 2011

Never met him, but I loved visiting the Mugar Omni Theater at the Boston Museum of Science as a kid. He narrated the introduction to the theater before the feature started. His voice on those booming speakers was awesome.

58. Victor Hugo - October 5, 2011

I met him here in Brazil at a 2003 convention, gosh, i feel so lucky :)

59. Bugs nixon - October 5, 2011

That is one magnificent looking 80 year old.

60. Driver - October 5, 2011

Are there no Star Trek fans at FOX News? So sad. One wonders on the inaccuracy of other stories.

61. Eric Cheung - October 5, 2011

57. I used to work at the MOS and heard they were doing a new version of the New England Time Capsule (the short film Nimoy narrated, not the audio test). A few years ago I used my question at a convention to ask him if he’d been asked to contribute to it. He joked, “No. Should I be offended?” I suggested that he should. For a similarly hilarious Nimoy science museum introductory film, check out his film at the Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon Theater at the Griffith Observatory in LA.

62. Duncan MacLeod - October 5, 2011

JJ Abrams said at the end, “Leonard Nimoy is to Star Trek what William Shatner is to…?” Can’t quite hear the word. Anyone get it?

He said “What William Shatner is to Priceline!”

63. Andy Patterson - October 5, 2011

56

@ 60

More importantly,…are there no proof readers there or someone smart enough to know the difference?

64. Andy Patterson - October 5, 2011

And I disagree JJ….I think Shatner has always been Star Trek. To me at least.

65. Dr. Image - October 5, 2011

Retired?? Never say never!
(John- thanks for the photos… tungsten on the white balance next time ;)

66. Zee - October 5, 2011

#55 Keachick

Karl Urban called Leonard Nimoy a green blooded hobgoblin.

67. Canon Schmanon - October 5, 2011

Forgot to say that I saw Nimoy in person at the Guthrie theater, where he performed in Vincent, playing both Vincent and Theo Van Gogh. This must have been the early 80s, and it was the first time I realized what a really versatile and excellent actor he was. Not sure if this was the performance they recorded for the DVD, but you should check it out. It’s both funny and sad.

68. BiggestTOSfanever - October 5, 2011

I went to this convention and it was an exciting and emotional experience. When we held up the ‘We Love You Leonard” signs at Leonard Nimoy’s entrance he got choked up and then he joked about showing emotion. I got his autograph afterward and he was very nice and friendly. It was the best weekend I’ve ever spent in Chicago.
Also, when he was talking about retirement from conventions he said that we still might see him pop up in TV or Movies here or there. That gives me hope about a cameo in the next Star Trek movie!
LLAP Leonard Nimoy

69. Keachick (rose pinenut) - October 5, 2011

#68 – “That gives me hope about a cameo in the next Star Trek movie!”

Chris Pine said about Leonard Nimoy, “I’ll be seeing you very soon.” Does he mean socially? Does Chris mean seeing Leonard Nimoy on the set of the Star Trek sequel doing another appearance as Mr Spock?

To the Star Trek movie making team – there are two questions to which the answers to both questions simply require a Yes or No answer. We know how you guys love to talk in ambiguous ways…:)

70. BiggestTOSfanever - October 5, 2011

#69
Agreed, and we need a clear date to set a countdown for.

71. Sebastian S. - October 5, 2011

I’m not buying that this is his last convention (they’re becoming like Cher farewell tours), but at any rate I wish him all the best. When I met him at Comic Con ’09 he was very much a classy gentlemen.

Live Long and Prosper, Mr Nimoy! You so richly deserve it.
See you at the next convention…
;-)

72. Starbase Britain - October 6, 2011

A true icon. The man has such integrity. His immense contribution to star trek will live to the 23rd century …and beyond. Happy retirement Mr Nimoy. you deserve it and all the acolades that you get. thanks for a wonderful experience.

Greg

73. Narda Campbell - October 6, 2011

Live long and prosper daer friend! Living in Australia, I have never been to a convention! But I have all of the original Trek and am a true fan and have been all my life. I wish you well Mr Leonard Nimoy!

74. Let Them Eat Plomeek Soup - October 7, 2011

Live long and prosper, Mr. Nimoy. You have been my inspiration and–dammit–crush since I first got into Star Trek.

Thanks for the memories.

75. sherry - October 9, 2011

Leonard Nimoy were all going to miss you .. you were a great actor,,, inspired us all,,, happy journeys,,,, Star Trek was one of my favorite shows that you ever played as Mr. Spock,,,

even though I never met you I’ve always been a Star Trek fan,,,
I’ve been watching you ever since I was a teenager and seen all your shows,,

I really like the one from the Charion Planet,,,, this is how far I go back,,,,

you are great in all of your characters including Mr Spock,,,,,,, you will be greatly missed,,,

Edmonton Alberta Canada,,,, one of these days you should come down and see our great mall,,,, we call it West Edmonton Mall,,,, one of the first to biggest ever made,,,,,

76. Germangirl - October 11, 2011

he´s aries… see you, lenny ;-)

77. Adam Bomb 1701 - October 11, 2011

I was at Mr. Nimoy’s first convention appearance, at the Americana Hotel in New York City way back in February 1974. (Jeez, I’m showing my age.) He made a surprise appearance at the con in an attempt to address the rumors circulating at the time that he was trying to distance himself from the character and the show.

78. Shinzon's Lover - October 16, 2011

How many conventions have been Nimoy’s last again?

79. Rebecca - November 11, 2011

Leonard Nimoy and Patrick Stuard are my favorite Star Trek actors! They are intelligent and ahead of their time in many ways!

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