StarTrek.com is saddened to report the passing of John D.F. Black, a writer, story editor, executive story consultant and associate producer on Star Trek: The Original Series during its first season. Black died peacefully of natural causes in California on November 29 at age 85, his wife, Mary Black, confirmed to Black's publisher Jacobs/Brown Press, which revealed the news yesterday.
Black earned one solo teleplay while with TOS, and it was an important one: "The Naked Time," which helped establish the character of Spock and earned Black a Hugo Award nomination. He beamed back to Trek for Star Trek: The Next Generation, writing the episode "Justice" (using a pseudonym, Ralph Wills) and receiving a "Story By" credit on "The Naked Now," a follow-up to "The Naked Time." More recently, he provided commentary seen and heard on the Blu-rays, 50 Years of Star Trek and Star Trek: Inside the Roddenberry Vault.
His non-Trek writing credits included The Unearthly, Lawman, Mr. Novak, Laredo, Wonder Woman (the Cathy Lee Crosby pilot, which he also co-produced), The Fugitive, Mary Tyler Moore, Shaft, The Carey Treatment, Man from Atlantis, Charlie's Angels, The Clone Master and Murder, She Wrote. He even directed an episode of Charlie's Angels.
Black is survived by his wife -- who served as his executive secretary at TOS -- and two sons. Memorial services are pending. Please join StarTrek.com in offering our condolences to Black's family, friends, colleagues and fans.