Remembering TOS & DS9 Guest Star William Schallert, 1922-2016

Remembering TOS & DS9 Guest Star William Schallert, 1922-2016

StarTrek.com is saddened to report that William Schallert -- veteran character actor, former president of the Screen Actors Guild and Star Trek: The Original Series and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine guest star -- has passed away at the age of 93. Schallert, who died on Sunday, May 8, in Pacific Palisades, California, is best remembered by Trek fans for his role as Nilz Baris in the wildly popular TOS episode “The Trouble with Tribbles.” Schallert later turned up, via archive footage, as Baris in the DS9 hour “Trials and Tribble-ations,” and then in another full-fledged guest star spot as Varani in the DS9 episode “Sanctuary.”

Beyond his Star Trek roles, he played Patty Duke's father on the classic sitcom The Patty Duke Show, appeared in many stage productions and was a familiar face in countless TV series and movies. Just a partial list of his credits includes the original Mighty Joe Young, Bonanza, The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Incredible Shrinking Man, Father Knows Best, Get Smart, Pillow Talk, In the Heat of the Night, Lou Grant, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Twilight Zone, The Partridge Family, The Strongest Man in the World, Twilight Zone: The Movie, Innerspace, Quantum Leap, Matinee, Melrose Place, Desperate Housewives, How I Met Your Mother and True Blood.
StarTrek.com spoke to Schallert in 2011; go HERE to read the full interview. He was still acting, full of positive energy and very much of sound mind. And it was clear he appreciated his association with Star Trek. "People sure have known me from (the show) for a long time," he said. "They knew who I was on that show before I knew who I was on that show. I was invited to a very early Star Trek convention that was held at the Marriott Hotel at the airport (in L.A.). I arrived there and went through the door into the main lobby, and it was loaded with aliens, with little antennae bouncing around on their heads. As I came through the door, they were saying, 'Nilz Baris!' I’m looking around and they said, 'No, that’s you!' So that’s how I learned my name from that show. There was no signing of autographs there. I was making a personal appearance. And there was a kid there who was, at the most, eight or nine. He had six months to live and he was in a wheelchair, and this was the most important thing he could do in the last six months of his life, coming to this Star Trek convention. I thought, 'Wow, this is amazing. This show has a real hold on people.' He was thrilled to be there. He was being wheeled around and shaking hands with people. I was thinking, 'He’s going to die, and this is the thing he had to do before he died.' It tells you something about the show."
Schallert's wife since 1949, Rosemarie, passed away last year. He is survived by their four sons, Edwin, Joseph, Mark and Brendan, as well as seven grandchildren. Please join StarTrek.com in offering condolences to Schallert's family, friends, colleagues and many fans.
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