The Star Trek community has lost another one of its alumni. Robert Walker Jr., who is best known for his role as in Star Trek Original Series' second aired episode "Charlie X" - as well as films like The Happening and Easy Rider - has died at the age of 79. Walker, who was the son of Hollywood actors Robert Walker (Strangers on a Train) and Jennifer Jones (The Song of Bernadette), passed away in Malibu, California on Thursday. His wife Dawn has released a statement, addressing her husband's passing. You can read that below, courtesty of THR:
"Bob always beat to his own drum and stayed true to himself in all of his endeavors. Although an accomplished actor, his true art was living fully. He was a photographer, drummer, raconteur and gallery owner. His love of the ocean kept him in Malibu, and he had great tales of his adventures paddling to Catalina from there. Bob [also] had a constant interest in developing his internal martial arts practice."
Robert Walker Jr. was born in Queens, New York in 1940, and moved between the US and Europe throughout his youth. He was trained at the Actors Studio, and got his start in the business appearing in episodes of '60s TV shows Route 66 and Naked City, before jumping to feature films with the Kirk Douglas film, The Hook. He would get a Golden Globe for most promising male newcomer that same year (after a role in The Ceremony). His career in the '60s would see him co-star with the likes of John Wayne (The War Wagon), Celeste Yarnall (Eve), and Rita Hayworth (Road to Salina) - not to mention his now-famous role as Charlie Evans, a malevolent phsyic-powered teen in the second episode of Star Trek that was broadcast on TV. Walker's other TV roles included spots on now-famous shows like Dallas, Charlie's Angels, Columbo, CHiPs, Murder, She Wrote, L.A. Law and others.
Robert Walker Jr. would tragically lose his father in 1951 (age 32) due to a combination of alcohol and sedatives; his mother divorced, remarried, and lived until 2009 (age 90). Walker would see further tragic losses in his family: his half sister Mary Jennifer Selznick committed suicide in 1976 (age 21), and his younger brother Michael passed away in 2007. This also isn't the only instance of loss that the Star Trek community has suffered this Fall: Another Original Series almuni, Michael J. Pollard, died at age 80 just before the Thanksgiving Holiday.
R.I.P. Robert Walker Jr., April 15, 1940 - December 5, 2019. We send condolences to Mr. Walker's family, friends, and many fans.