Bruce Hyde, who played the role of Lt. Kevin Riley in the original Star Trek series, has passed away after a long battle with throat cancer.
The actor, who also appeared in shows such as Dr. Kildare, That Girl and The Beverly Hilbillies, died on October 13th, aged 74.
Although appearing on screen and stage, including a role in Broadway's adaptation of Canterbury Tales, Hyde would later turn to teaching to share his craft with others. He became a professor at St. Cloud State University in Minnesota where he taught classes in the Theatre and Film and Communication Studies departments.
He is survived by his wife Susan who, confirming the news, stated:
"There were so many layers to him. He was an actor, a singer, a musician, a writer, an artist. He had so many different complexities to him, but I think the thing that best fit him was being a teacher. He was able to blend all of those in his teaching."
The classic Star Trek episode in which Hyde featured most prominently, 'The Naked Time' (George Takei's favorite episode, in fact), featured Riley becoming infected with an unusual disease that caused him to lose all inhibitions. Under the influence of the disease, he took control of engineering and re-routed all the ships functions to there -- effectively taking control of the Enterprise. He then declared himself Captain Kevin Thomas Riley and then began bizarrely bombarding the crew with continual renditions of "I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen." Eventually the crew were able to regain control of the ship and Riley recovered from the affliction. You can see Hyde discussing the episode and his role in it, below:
A second episode, 'The Conscious of the King,' also had Riley at the center, and involved him discovering the killer of his family, Kodos the Executioner, aboard the Enterprise. He takes it upon himself to kill Kodos and avenge his family, but he is eventually talked out of it by Kirk.