After more then 50 years of acting, Star Trek's Walter Keonig has finally received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His is the 2,479th star and the last of The Original Series crew to get one. Many of the guests on hand includes alumni from previous Star Trek series including eorge Takei, Nichelle Nichols, Tim Russ, Garrett Wang, Chase Masterson and more. Babylon 5 (show Keonig starred on) creator J. Michael Strazynski spoke at the vent saying "About God-damn time!" Leonard Nimoy also spoke saying:
I remember when Walter came on board the Enterprise there were people that had reasons for bringing this character on board. At the time our major adversaries were the Russians and it was decided for the sake of showing a positive aspect of the future it would be a good thing to have a Russian on board. Also at the same time the Beatles were a big deal and they had these interesting hair cuts and someone said "maybe we will pick up a bit of the Beatles audience we should put a Beatle wig on him." So Walter came in with his excellent Russian accent and a Beatle wig and something interesting happened. It turned out that Walter was a good actor and he took these slim dimensions of a character that had been handed to him and he created a three dimensional flesh and blood person who made an enormous contribution to Star Trek over the years.The star came in large part thanks to Rod Roddenberry, son of Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry, who provided the funds and support necessary to get him the star. I am unclear on why it took so long but apparently it has been a bit of a fight.
Walter Keonig spoke with Star Trek.com about the ceremony saying:
"It was very nice. I'm a little tired, so I'm not firing on all pistons here. And I'm also still juggling it around in my mind what it means, so that I can come to some sort of determination as to what it signifies. I was happy to see everyone. There were people I hadn't seen in 10 or 15 years. It was great to have Leonard, George and Nichelle there as well."The star itself can be found at 6679 Hollywood Boulevard in front of the Board Walk Restaurant. A video of Walter Keonig's comments during the ceremony is below, more pictures can be found here. He will next reprise the role of Chekov for Star Trek: Renegades webisodes that have begun production with Star Trek: Voyager's Tim Russ directing.
"Well, I'm very grateful to all the folks who put their support behind this, and for their enthusiasm. Morale sometimes suffers when things don't seem to be moving along, but with all of the fans and their vociferous support, it certainly meant something. I really feel that I'm here not so much because of the Chamber of Commerce, but because of the fans out there who love Star Trek."