Majel Barrett-Roddenberry, Star Trek actress, voice of the Enterprise computer, and wife of the late Gene Roddenberry, passed away yesterday at 76 years old after a battle with leukemia. Majel was truly one of the stewards of science fiction, always a true believer in the material, always giving her all for material most people thought was kids' junk, and watching out for the integrity of her husband's works both before and after his passing. It's too bad NBC couldn't believe in having both an alien crewmember and a female first officer the way Gene Roddenberry had originally shot the pilot for Star Trek, Majel was a committed actress who deserved meatier roles, and her later works proved she could absolutely carry them. She was extremely kind and very generous of spirit, she was like an aunt to all trekkies. I met her at a little Trek convention in the mid '80s when I was a kid, she was so nice and cared a great deal about this stuff, she ended up talking to my mom (also a Trekkie) for a couple hours there.
To me, it's never been Star Trek vs. Star Wars, there's always been room in my universe for both. When George Lucas was first conceiving of and writing Star Wars, he spent a lot of time watching Trek reruns, and held admiration for many of its storytelling styles and devices.
Majel's passing diminishes us all as science fiction fans, and her presence in sci-fi will be sorely missed.